Throughout early 2020, President Donald Trump apparently ignored more than a dozen additional warnings about the Coronavirus that were included in the President’s Daily Briefs, which are briefings delivered to the president each and every day — although Trump apparently frequently does not actually read the documents and “bristles at having to listen to oral summaries,” AFP summarizes. If he had taken the warnings seriously, then he could have acted more swiftly to enact measures to stem the spread of the virus and thereby kept the U.S. death toll below its current point of over 57,000 and counting.
Based off a report in The Washington Post, AFP summarizes:
‘For weeks, the Daily Briefs traced the spread of the virus, said that China was suppressing information about the virus’s lethality and ease of transmission, and mentioned the frightful political and economic consequences, the Post said. The president, who officials told the Post often does not read the briefings and bristles at having to listen to oral summaries, failed to mobilize for a major pandemic.’
At the end of January, Trump did restrict travel to the U.S. from China, but that was not enough to keep the virus from spreading at a large scale within the U.S. — obviously. The restrictions that he implemented weren’t even enough to stop the flight of tens of thousands of additional passengers from China to the U.S. after the restrictions’ implementation. Those passengers were legal U.S. residents, who were exempted from the restriction, but the least that the Trump administration could have done is provide some kind of screening or testing before sending the individuals off to freely mingle among the population. The Trump administration seemingly did no such thing.
400k+ flew from China before the US became the 39th country to impose travel restrictions. 40k+ came after. Since CV was already here and the fact that the US now leads in cases and is 3rd in deaths makes Trump’s claim of early decisive action meaningless. https://t.co/nQj5Bq3thg
— Rick Tyler-Still Right (@rickwtyler) April 7, 2020
It took the president until well into March to even implement national social distancing guidelines meant to stem the virus’s spread. If he had implemented those guidelines sooner, than the virus could have been kept below its current staggering level in the U.S., which now has more than one million confirmed Coronavirus cases.
Trump’s current acting Director of National Intelligence, Richard Grenell, has denied that the Coronavirus was featured in more than a dozen editions of the President’s Daily Brief, as reported. He tweeted in direct response to New York Times reporter Maggie Haberman:
‘This isn’t true. And we told you this before you wrote. And you put the DNI denial of your premise in paragraph 9.’
This isn’t true. And we told you this before you wrote. And you put the DNI denial of your premise in paragraph 9. https://t.co/kVYJvGxL0r
— Richard Grenell (@RichardGrenell) April 28, 2020
Does he seriously expect us to believe that the Coronavirus didn’t figure in the President’s daily briefings at all throughout the early months of 2020? The entire point of the briefings is to chronicle rising threats.
California Democratic Congressman Ted Lieu pointed out:
‘t would be a dereliction of duty on the part of our incredible intelligence agencies if this were not true. You would expect our intelligence agencies to be on top of this.’
The Trump team, however, has never exactly hesitated to through intelligence agencies under the bus in the past.
It would be a dereliction of duty on the part of our incredible intelligence agencies if this were not true. You would expect our intelligence agencies to be on top of this.
— Ted Lieu (@tedlieu) April 28, 2020
Now, the U.S. is continuing to suffer under the weight of the president’s incompetence and inaction.