Larry Hogan, the Republican governor of Maryland, said “waiting around” for President Donald Trump to run the nation’s coronavirus response was “hopeless” during an interview in which he criticized the Trump administration’s response as inadequate.
“Eventually, it was clear that waiting around for the president to run the nation’s response was hopeless; if we delayed any longer, we’d be condemning more of our citizens to suffering and death. So every governor went their own way,” Hogan wrote in a Washington Post op-ed.
“So many nationwide actions could have been taken in those early days but weren’t. While other countries were racing ahead with well-coordinated testing regimes, the Trump administration bungled the effort,” he continued, adding: “The test used by the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention early on was fraught with inaccuracies, and onerous regulations hindered the nation’s private labs. The resulting disorganization would delay mass testing for almost two months and leave the nation largely in the dark as the epidemic spread.”
Meanwhile, “instead of listening to his own public health experts, the president was talking and tweeting like a man more concerned about boosting the stock market or his reelection plans,” Hogan wrote.
He also took the White House to task for its mixed messaging and attempts to discredit public health experts like Dr. Anthony Fauci, the national authority on the coronavirus response.
“It was jarring, the huge contrast between the experts’ warnings and the president’s public dismissals.,” Hogan observed. “Weren’t these the people the White House was consulting about the virus? What made the briefing even more chilling was its clear, factual tone. It was a harrowing warning of an imminent national threat, and we took it seriously — at least most of us did. It was enough to convince almost all the governors that this epidemic was going to be worse than most people realized.”
Alan is a writer, editor, and news junkie based in New York.