As more and more Republican voters have become disgusted with the effects of all the various coronavirus mandates, Trump's reelection team has been attempting to whitewash Trump's role in the shutdowns, social distancing policies, mask orders, and other less than popular policies that have been put in place during this crisis. In typical Trumpian fashion, the President's bootlickers are now claiming that the President was opposed to things like shutting down the economy, telling churches not to hold in-person services, separating workers into essential vs. non-essential categories, and so on. They're now claiming that evil Democrat governors came up with these ideas all on their own, and that Donald Trump has been fighting against them from the beginning.
I finally got so fed-up with this lie that I took the time to read through all of the Trump administrations public statements about the coronavirus beginning in March and going through May 8th. I stopped at May 8th because that was all the time that I had to devote to this project. I'm sure you could carry it further if you wanted to. In fact, just two days prior to this writing, Trump sent out a tweet encouraging all Florida voters to vote by mail instead of voting in person. But I'll leave that for someone else. Here are NINE pages worth of quotations from the Trump administration which prove that Trump IS responsible for how America responded to the coronavirus:
March 16, 2020
"we’re announcing new guidelines for every American to follow"
"On the guidelines of the task force, the new modeling conducted by Dr. Birx, and our consultation with governors, we’ve made the decision to further toughen the guidelines and blunt the infection now."
"my administration is recommending that all Americans, including the young and healthy, work to engage in schooling from home when possible. Avoid gathering in groups of more than 10 people. Avoid discretionary travel. And avoid eating and drinking at bars, restaurants, and public food courts."
"And I have to say that our government is prepared to do whatever it takes."
"We’ve been working with the governors and the — frankly, the mayors, local government at every level."
"remember this: we want the governors, we want the mayors, we want them locally — from a local standpoint, because it can go quicker — we want them to work. And we had a great talk with the governors today. I think it was a really great talk. There’s a tremendous coordination. There’s a tremendous spirit that we have together with the governors. And that’s pretty much, for the most part, bipartisan."
"The President asked the task force to continuously review the data and the information that we have not only in this country, but from around the world, to give the best guidance to state leadership and local healthcare leadership and all of the American people about how to keep themselves, their family, and their community safe."
March 18, 2020
“today, CMS will announce detailed recommendations to further promote this needed conservation, specifically by limiting non-essential elective medical and surgical procedures, including dental procedures.”
“We believe that these recommendations will help surgeons, patients, and hospitals prioritize what is essential while leaving the ultimate decision in the hands of state and local health officials and those clinicians who have direct responsibility to their patients.”
March 29, 2020
"Therefore, the next two weeks, and during this period, it’s very important that everyone strongly follow the guidelines."
"Therefore, we will be extending our guidelines to April 30th to slow the spread."
"We can expect that, by June 1st, we will be well on our way to recovery."
March 30, 2020
“We know that many providers are complying with our recommendations to delay nonessential elective surgeries, and they shouldn’t be penalized for doing the right thing.”
April 1, 2020
"On March 16, President Trump announced public health guidelines to slow the spread of Coronavirus in America."
"As he said on Monday, it’s likely that a peak in Coronavirus fatalities will arrive in about two weeks. If we continue to follow public health guidelines vigorously, we could save more than 1 million American lives in the weeks and months ahead."
"A million American lives are worth fighting for. That’s why this week, President Trump extended his Coronavirus Guidelines for America through the next 30 days."
"Following President Trump’s National Emergency declaration last month, all 50 states are working closely with the Federal Government to ensure local needs are met."
"Social distancing is clearly doing its job"
April 1, 2020
"my biggest disappointment is that churches can’t meet in a time of need."
"And I will tell you, it’s a — it’s very, very disappointing. But again, you get too close, and if somebody is sick, you’re going to probably catch it."
April 2, 2020
"President Trump announced updated guidelines this week to continue slowing the spread of Coronavirus in America."
"these guidelines remain essential for containing the virus"
How you can help:
"Listen and follow all directions from your state and local authorities."
"Avoid social gatherings, especially those with more than 10 people."
April 5, 2020
"Think of it. We’re not going to churches on Palm Sunday. But think of next Sunday: Easter. And I brought it up before: I said, maybe we could allow special for churches. Maybe we could talk about it. Maybe we could allow them, with great separation, outside on Easter Sunday. I don’t know, it’s something we should talk about."
April 8, 2020
"Q Mr. Vice President, a follow-up on the churches question. You’re obviously a very religious man. Will you be going to church on Sunday?
THE VICE PRESIDENT: We’ll be attending church right in the living room at the Vice President’s Residence, where we have been attending for the last several weeks.
Q And is that the guidance?
THE VICE PRESIDENT: And the advantage is we get to go to our home church in Indiana.
Q Is that the same example you’d like to see churches around the country, regardless of what governors are saying, do as well?
THE VICE PRESIDENT: Well, I think the President’s Coronavirus Guidelines for America are very clear. That during this 30 days, we are calling on every American in every state first to listen to your state and local authorities, but right after that to avoid gatherings of more than 10 people, avoid unnecessary travel, use drive-through at restaurant instead of going into the restaurant. We are, as these health experts have told you, seeing real evidence that we’re slowing the spread, that these mitigation efforts are having a strong impact.
And tonight, as many people even at this hour on the East Coast are beginning to sit down to a Seder dinner — it’s the beginning of Passover — and with Easter celebrations this Sunday, we just want to encourage every American to heed the counsel of the guidelines, put those into effect, and know that in so doing we’ll hasten the day — we’ll hasten the day that we put the coronavirus in the past and we reopen our country."
“today the CDC will be publishing new guidance on essential critical workers who have been exposed to COVID-19 but don’t have any symptoms”
“what CDC has done is that we’ve really looked at the essential workforce and how to maintain that workforce, particularly at this time as we begin to get ready to reopen and have confidence in bringing our workforces back to work.”
April 10, 2020
"Thanks to the selflessness and patriotism of Americans who have rallied behind President Trump’s Coronavirus Guidelines, we are slowing the spread of this disease and saving many, many lives."
"The President’s guidelines called for 30 days of mitigation efforts, which continue through the end of April. According to health experts, these actions are paying off."
"When more people socially distance themselves and follow President Trump’s guidelines, more time is bought to develop safe, effective treatments."
April 9, 2020
“In a few moments, Secretary of Labor, Eugene Scalia, will explain new steps that we’re taking to ensure American workers swiftly receive unemployment and paid leave benefits and that employers protect the health and safety of all workers, including essential workers on the job”
April 10, 2020
"We also want to say very respectfully to all of the — all the church communities around this country and all the places of worship to continue to heed the guidelines issued in the President’s Coronavirus Guidelines for America. We know it’s difficult in this time of year, particularly, Mr. President, to avoid gatherings of more than 10. But we’re grateful that so many churches, synagogues, and places of worship have done just that, and we urge you to continue to do it."
"Do you have a message to those pastors who are still planning to have Easter services, defying the Public Health’s guidelines?"
"this is a very complex subject, let’s face it, you know, for the obvious reasons. I don’t have to go into it. And most of the pastors agree that they are better off doing what they’re doing, which is distancing."
"Doesn’t sound good, but it’s, you know, it’s one of those things — it cannot be church. You know, I’m not going to get into it. It cannot be church."
"But I would say first heal — I’m a Christian — heal our country. Let’s get healed before we do this. And there’s time to do that. We’ll do it for hopefully the rest of our lives."
April 16, 2020
"President Donald J. Trump is continuing the fight against the coronavirus by beginning to reopen the country in a smart and safe way."
"The Trump Administration is issuing new guidelines to enable individual States to reopen in phases using a deliberate, data-driven approach."
"Under these guidelines, States will reopen one step at a time, rather than all at once."
"Governors can begin phased openings at the Statewide or county-by-county level."
"These guidelines will allow healthy Americans to safely return to work as conditions allow while protecting seniors and other vulnerable Americans."
April 27, 2020
"States must be able to proactively monitor for and respond to local outbreaks."
"States, in coordination with the CDC, must also develop innovative and robust systems to identify asymptomatic cases."
"States should develop rapid response programs that enable quick isolation and contact tracing of individuals who test positive"
"The Administration will provide technical assistance to States so they can trace contacts effectively."
"Together, these elements of testing plans and rapid response programs will enable State and local officials to quickly isolate cases, respond to local outbreaks, and create confidence that citizens are safe to engage in social and business activities."
April 16, 2020
"Today, President Donald J. Trump and members of his Administration hosted phone calls with Republican and Democrat Members of the House of Representatives and Senate serving on the Opening Up America Again Congressional Group. The President announced that he will soon provide guidance to America’s Governors to determine their ability to reignite the economies in their respective States. The dialogue between the President, senior Administration officials, and the bipartisan group of Members of Congress also included a range of topics, namely ... clarifying the difference between essential and non-essential workers."
“I just want to say I really appreciate the three and a half million men and women truck drivers out here that are running up and down the roads every day, supplying the essentials that we need — the groceries on the shelves, the toilet paper, et cetera — to keep our essential workers out there and keep them striving.”
“And we also declared that our talented workers at private truck stops are essential employees. They are indeed. I don’t know if you know that. Did you know we call you all as “essential”? There’s very few people called “essential.” I don’t know if they call me essential. I’m not sure about that. But you’re essential, that I can tell you.”
April 29, 2020
"Two weeks ago, we released guidelines to give states a real strong indication of what we want and how we want it done. We’ve really had a good relationship with the states."
"We’ve encouraged the more than 30 states that have taken steps to resume economic activity already — we’ve given them tremendous encouragement and support. We’re backing them 100 percent. You know, many governors have called me, telling me their plans, laying them out: governor of Texas, Oklahoma, governor of Arkansas — many, many governors. I spoke with Governor Cuomo."
"thanks to the partnership that we forged with states across the country, working with local health officials, Mr. President, as you said yesterday, we have light at the end of the tunnel."
"That’s a testament to the American people and to the way the American people, now nearly 45 days ago, embraced the guidelines to slow the spread. And as we come to the end of this mitigation period, states across the country have all embraced those same mitigation and social distancing efforts. The American people to put them into practice. We’ve saved lives. We’ve protected the vulnerable. We preserved our healthcare system. And we’re well on our way to healing our land."
"35 states have already released formal opening plans, many of which are consulting directly with our team here in the administration, and we’re going to continue to work with all of them."
"we’re absolutely committed, as soon as it is safe and responsible to do so, to partner with governors across the country, partner with businesses across the country, and open up America again."
"Well, we will step in if we see something wrong. We have given discretion to the governors."
"we want the governors to call those shots. If we see something that we don’t like or that’s bad or that’s unsafe, we’ll stop it immediately."
"some of the facts are coming out, and we did all the right moves ... If we didn’t do what we did, you would’ve had a million people die, maybe more. Maybe 2 million people die."
"You know, there’re — every once in a while, a country like Sweden will be thrown out ... the people in Sweden, they’re not running around and shaking hands and hugging and kissing each other. You know, they’re — the bars are closed and the — the people are staying in the house."
"The Prime Minister doesn’t have to — doesn’t have to say in Sweden, “Stay in your house.” The people stay there automatically. And, you know, they’re using that as an example, but they’ve been hit hard. They’ve been hit hard. But again, their prac- — you call it automatic. I mean, it’s automatic distancing. It’s automatic protection. But places were closed, the bars were closed. You can’t stand at the bars. You can’t do certain things."
"You know — now, what we did was — what we did is a great tribute to this country ... But if we lose 65,000 people, and instead of that going the other route, we would have lost a million or a million and a half or 2 million."
May 4, 2020
"My husband and I both work at our local church, and I think a lot of us churchgoers are just wondering when we might be able to get back to an in-person church service. Do you have any idea when this might be?"
"I hope it’s going to be very soon, because I’m seeing things that I don’t like seeing."
"I will say this: It’s wonderful to watch people over a laptop, but it’s not like being at a church. And we have to get our people back to churches, and we’re going to start doing it soon."
May 7, 2020
“But with regard to essential workers the President referred to, we’ve always had an exception: people to keep food on the table, people that are involved in public safety, most especially healthcare workers. We’ve asked them to continue to go to work by taking other countermeasures, including testing, to ensure that they’ve not contracted the disease.”
May 8, 2020
“All of the recommended guidelines we have for businesses that have essential workers, we’re now putting in place here in the White House.”
Bill Fortenberry is a Christian philosopher and historian in Birmingham, AL. Bill's work has been cited in several legal journals, and he has appeared as a guest on shows including The Dr. Gina Show, The Michael Hart Show, and Real Science Radio.
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