When a reporter asked Mike Pence why the Trump administration has failed to live up to its initial promise on coronavirus testing capacity, the vice president blamed the media and the American public for not understanding just how good a job the president has done.
“Mr. Vice President, back in early March you said we’d be at four million tests by the following week,” Jonathan Karl of ABC News pointed out at Monday’s press conference. “We’ve just now got there in the last few days.”
“What lessons have you learned from the mistakes over the last month and a half or so?” Karl asked.
“Jon, I appreciate the question, but it represents a misunderstanding on your part and, frankly, a lot of people in the public’s part,” Pence responded.
The vice president went on to boast about achieving a level of testing that he promised would be achieved weeks ago.
.@jonkarl: We sat here over a month ago and heard similar remarks from CEOs about how they were going to rapidly roll out new testing. It didn’t really happen. What went wrong?
PENCE: “I appreciate the question, but it represents a misunderstanding on your part.” pic.twitter.com/3IRz3Z44M7
— Aaron Rupar (@atrupar) April 27, 2020
The American people aren’t misunderstood. They’re just listening to health experts.
With Donald Trump standing by his side, Mike Pence did the only thing he knew he could do: blame the media and the American people for his boss’ catastrophic failures.
But the truth is that many states still are still well short of the number of test kits they need to safely reopen their economies. Trump, meanwhile, has put more emphasis on attacking individual governors than solving this problem.
The American people aren’t misunderstood. They’re right to be angry about this administration’s inability to ramp up testing capacity. State and local leaders, as well as front-line health officials, have also expressed outrage.
Donald Trump and Mike Pence need to stop spending their time pointing fingers at everybody else for their failures and start doing their job.
Sean Colarossi currently resides in Cleveland, Ohio. He earned his Bachelor of Arts degree in Journalism from the University of Massachusetts Amherst and was an organizing fellow for both of President Obama’s presidential campaigns. He also worked with Planned Parenthood as an Affordable Care Act Outreach Organizer in 2014, helping northeast Ohio residents obtain health insurance coverage.