Joe Biden Has Repeatedly Called on Donald Trump to Take Actions Taken Weeks Before
Joe Biden again called on President Donald Trump to take measures to combat the coronavirus (COVID-19) indeed already in place. In an interview with ABC’s George Stephanopoulos on This Week, he called on the president to invoke the Defense Production Act (DPA) and appoint a supply commander to combat coronavirus.
There’s just one problem. The president has already done both.
On March 18, President Trump first invoked the DPA for the non-specified purpose to prioritize and allocate resources. Put plainly, the invocation grants the president vast powers for emergency preparedness, to include requiring private companies to manufacture critical supplies in times of crisis.
On March 23, he used DPA to curb the hoarding of resources. On March 27, the president used the DPA to require General Motors Company (GM) to produce ventilators for coronavirus patients.
Hours later, he appointed Peter Navarro to also serve as the policy coordinator on DPA. The administration set a goal for the U.S. to produce 100,000 ventilators in next 100 days.
President Trump previously appointed Rear Admiral John Polowczyk of the Joint Chiefs of Staff to head up the Supply Chain Stabilization Task Force for the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). He’s been serving in that capacity since last month, though has taken a more public role only in the last week.
This is not the first time the former vice president has either accused the president of not doing something or has called for action the president has already taken.
On March 12, the Trump Campaign accused the Biden Campaign of “plagiarizing” the president’s plan to combat the coronavirus. During a press conference, Mr Biden said “no efforts should be spared” to get private labs and universities to expand testing.
While testing was an area of challenge in the early period of the outbreak, the president weeks before had ordered the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to allow hundreds of private labs and academic hospitals to do just that.
Mr. Biden’s plan also called for financial assistance to small businesses to mitigate the economic devastation of forcing a shutdown. At the time, the President Trump already provided $50 billion in liquidity and requested more from the U.S. Congress.
The president would later sign the CARES Act, which included a provision providing more than $300 billion in loans for small businesses, much of which is eligible for forgiveness if used on payrolls.
The rest of the interview on Sunday made headlines for all the wrong reasons. One answer was nearly incoherent.
“We cannot let this, we’ve never allowed any crisis from the Civil War straight through to the pandemic of 17, all the way around, 16, we have never, never let our democracy sakes second fiddle, way they,” he bubbled in his response. “We can both have a democracy and elections and at the same time, correct public health.”
On at least two occasions, Mr. Biden has forgotten the name of coronavirus and the proper name of the swine flu, H1N1. At other times, he has mistaken one for the other.