Trump told governors they can't rely on him to provide necessary hospital equipment to handle an influx of coronavirus cases.
Donald Trump on Monday tried once again to shirk responsibility for containing the spread of the new coronavirus, telling governors across the country that they needed to do more on their own rather than depend on the federal government for assistance.
His comments came after governors, who have been taking the lead on the coronavirus response by instituting curfews and banning large gatherings, called on Trump to do more, fearing state hospitals will be unable to handle an influx of patients in serious conditions if the outbreak worsens.
According to a report by the New York Times, Trump told the governors they needed to try to get resources on their own — such as necessary hospital equipment — before turning to him for help.
"Respirators, ventilators, all of the equipment — try getting it yourselves," Trump said on a conference call Monday morning, the Times reported. "We will be backing you, but try getting it yourselves. Point of sales, much better, much more direct if you can get it yourself."
Trump appeared to confirm the report in a tweet Monday afternoon.
"Just had a
Trump was referring to Democratic New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo, who asked Trump on Monday to "deploy the Army Corps of Engineers to build temporary medical facilities, so that when hospitals are overwhelmed, we can move people into the temporary facilities."
"It's only a matter of time before our state's ICU beds fill up," Cuomo tweeted, referring to intensive care units in hospitals that are needed to treat patients with COVID-9. "The federal gov't must act."
Rather than agreeing to help in the way Cuomo asked, Trump said it was not his problem, and specifically called Cuomo out.
Cuomo quickly fired back.
"I have to do more?" Cuomo replied to Trump's tweet. "
Trump — who declared during the 2016 election that “I alone can fix it,” referring to the nation’s myriad problems — has so far refused to take any personal responsibility for the lack of testing and the slow response to the outbreak of COVID-19 caused by the coronavirus.
And on Friday, he again said that the lack of testing wasn't his fault.
"I don't take responsibility at all because we were given a set of circumstances, and we were given rules, regulations, and specifications from a different time," Trump said.
"Wasn't meant for this kind of an event, with the kind of numbers that we’re talking about."
Published with permission of The American Independent Foundation.