In emergencies — floods, hurricanes, war, terrorist attacks — the federal government has always taken the lead. It alone has the resources and authority to manage large scale responses to national emergencies.
How has Trump prepared for this national health emergency? Since 2018, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) budget for combating disease outbreaks was reduced by 80 percent. Despite urgent warnings beginning in early January 2020 from the CDC, the National Security Council (NSC), Health and Human Services, and administration officials, Trump lied about the seriousness of the crisis. What was he doing during this time? Was he getting the country ready to confront the problem? Was he gathering needed medical equipment?
No. He was running for reelection and playing golf. From Jan. 9 to March 8 Trump held nine political rallies across the country or was in Florida playing six rounds of golf — all on the taxpayer’s dime. Remember the campaign promise to always be in the White House? He’d be too busy working?
In a remarkable bit of truth for this president (16,000 lies or misstatements and counting) he said he did not take responsibility “at all” for disbanding the NSC Pandemic Response Agency that would have prepared the nation for health emergencies. After seeing recent press conferences, we now know he takes responsibility for nothing. Remember the campaign promise to never lie? “I will never put anyone’s interests ahead of yours.” He was already lying.
He was also remarkably truthful when he said that he knew it was always going to be a pandemic. He had been informed from early January when he was holding political rallies and golfing. Reelection and golf are his only interests, ahead of everyone else’s.
However, we should not think this president shoulders the blame alone. He’s helped from all the silent and supportive Republicans who ignore his worst dictatorial abuses. Consider the juvenile theatrics of Elise Stefanik during impeachment hearings. She has perfected the Republican method of breaking rules and then whining about the unfairness of having the rules enforced. The entire Republican party bears the responsibility for the deaths resulting from this virus because they have failed to check this president.
The country was unprepared because of this president. People have died because of him, but he will blame others for his abject failure while claiming to have done a great job.
Vote them all out.