In a Fox News interview before the Superbowl, President Donald Trump said that he stopped the coronavirus crisis.
According to ABC News’ Megan Hughes, Trump claimed that his administration has “pretty much shut it down.”
On coronavirus, Trump tells Hannity “We’ve pretty much shut it down.”
— Megan Hughes (@HughesNews) February 2, 2020
In fact, Trump has made things worse. Foreign Policy explained Sunday, the United States is unprepared for an outbreak of any virus.
“For the United States, the answers are especially worrying because the government has intentionally rendered itself incapable,” FP wrote. “In 2018, the Trump administration fired the government’s entire pandemic response chain of command, including the White House management infrastructure. In numerous phone calls and emails with key agencies across the U.S. government, the only consistent response I encountered was distressed confusion. If the United States still has a clear chain of command for pandemic response, the White House urgently needs to clarify what it is — not just for the public but for the government itself, which largely finds itself in the dark.”
Trump’s administration has been at war with science since he first took office. Now it could cost lives.
“When Ebola broke out in West Africa in 2014, President Barack Obama recognized that responding to the outbreak overseas, while also protecting Americans at home, involved multiple U.S. government departments and agencies, none of which were speaking to one another,” FP explained. “Basically, the U.S. pandemic infrastructure was an enormous orchestra full of talented, egotistical players, each jockeying for solos and fame, refusing to rehearse, and demanding higher salaries—all without a conductor.”
Obama’s administration brought “order and harmony” to what was absolute chaos. Under Trump, all of that is gone.
“Obama anointed a former vice presidential staffer, Ronald Klain, as a sort of ‘epidemic czar’ inside the White House, clearly stipulated the roles and budgets of various agencies, and placed incident commanders in charge in each Ebola-hit country and inside the United States,” FP continued. “The orchestra may have still had its off-key instruments, but it played the same tune.”
Former federal prosecutor Joyce Vance tweeted the reminder that Trump used a Sharpie to try and change a hurricane map, now he’s in charge of a response to a pandemic.
“Predictably, he has destroyed everything Obama built. This is an important read,” she advised of the FP story.
“In the spring of 2018, the White House pushed Congress to cut funding for Obama-era disease security programs, proposing to eliminate $252 million in previously committed resources for rebuilding health systems in Ebola-ravaged Liberia, Sierra Leone, and Guinea. Under fire from both sides of the aisle, President Donald Trump dropped the proposal to eliminate Ebola funds a month later. But other White House efforts included reducing $15 billion in national health spending and cutting the global disease-fighting operational budgets of the CDC, NSC, DHS, and HHS. And the government’s $30 million Complex Crises Fund was eliminated,” FP explained.
See the full Fox interview below:
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