Nancy Pelosi accused Donald Trump of not telling the truth about coronavirus, claiming she is ‘afraid’ of what the president’s future response to the crisis could entail as the severity of the outbreak is expected to reach its peak this week.
‘He has the bully pulpit and that’s a good thing for a president to have. It’s a bad thing for the health of the country if the president is not speaking truth,’ Pelosi said in an interview, according to Politico.
‘Our purpose is really to say how do we follow the science, the evidence, the data,’ the House Speaker continued, ‘that will take us down from this.’
Trump holds nearly-daily press briefings with the White House coronavirus task force, which are aired live on network television and on several live-streamed channels online.
The briefings are viewed by millions of Americans and are a way for Trump, his administration and his task force to have uninterrupted time to share their programming and response to the coronavirus pandemic. The briefings sometimes stretch past two hours.
Pelosi tries her best to counter the president’s wide reach by appearing in a television interview almost every day, many times from a computer webcam set up in her dining room or kitchen from her San Francisco home.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said Donald Trump is not telling the truth about coronavirus, and said he has no ‘basis’ to end lockdowns nationwide as the outbreak is expected to reach its peak this week
Donald Trump holds nearly-daily coronavirus press briefings – some extending past two hours
Pelosi does her best to counter the administration’s nearly unlimited air time by appearing almost every day for remote network television interviews, sometimes from her home in San Francisco
Pelosi also said in a call with Democrats Monday that she is ‘afraid’ Trump may try to reopen the country too soon, demanding Republicans and the administration focus on producing and distributing more PPE
As of Tuesday morning, more than 23,600 people in the U.S. died from coronavirus and the number of confirmed cases surpassed 588,000
The California Democrat lashed out at Trump during a private call with her party Monday, questioning what basis Trump has for proposing reopening the country by May 1, and claiming there is not evidence that the threat of coronavirus has abated enough to end lockdowns and stay-at-home orders.
‘During this period of reflection and the rest, I am really very afraid of what the president may do. He’s not learning from his past mistakes,’ Pelosi said on the call, according to several Democrats.
‘He’s talking about reopening — and on the basis of what?’ she lamented.
Trump asserted this week that he has the ultimate power to decide when the country should begin to reopen and end social distancing guidelines, which were put out by the White House in mid-March.
Governors, however, claim they are the ones with power to decide when their respective states should start letting up on stay-at-home orders.
The president said he wants to begin reopening the country as early as Mat 1, when the extended social distancing guidelines end.
The guidelines include instructing Americans to only leave their homes for necessary reasons like grocery shopping and going to the doctor, limiting social gatherings to 10 people or less and maintaining a 6-foot distance from others in public.
The Centers for Disease Control also issued recommendations to wear a face mask in public places, and some areas have issued ordinances, making it unlawful not to comply.
Some states have also already issued lockdown orders past the May 1 deadline, many extending well into June.
So far more than 23,600 people have died from coronavirus in the U.S. and the number of confirmed cases surpassed 588,000 as of Tuesday morning, which is more than any other country has reported.
However, according to predictive analyses, the coronavirus outbreak in the U.S. is expected to reach its peak this week.
The number of coronavirus cases in the U.S. has skyrocketed since the first confirmed case in March – but an analysis shows the outbreak is expected to reach its peak this week
Pelosi has been critical of Republican lawmakers and Trump’s response to the COVID-19 crisis, claiming they need to focus more on getting more personal protective equipment (PPE) produced and distributed to health care professions and hospitals.
She reiterated this point during the conference call with her party.
‘When you’re in a war, your first priority is force protection, protecting the troops. Our front-line workers need the equipment they deserve,’ Pelosi said of the ongoing negotiations.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell asked unanimous consent last Thursday to pass interim emergency relief for the payment protection program – expanding the measure passed in the CARES Act last month by $250 billion.
The motion, however, was blocked by Democrats who claimed they wanted more included in the interim bill, like money for food stamp programs and an increase in production and distribution of PPE amidst shortages in several states.
Republicans claim these measures could be included in a second CARES Act bill and insist the payment protection program to relieve small businesses and keep their employees on the payroll should not be dependent on securing money for other programs.