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Total Authority; Zero Responsibility

April 16, 2020

During today’s episode, I discuss how President Trump has flip-flopped between saying that America’s Governors are responsible for taking care of their states in the fight against COVID-19, to stating that he has total authority in making decisions for all 50 states during the pandemic.

This has been on full display during the past month.  First, Trump told Governors during a conference call that they are largely on their own in stocking up on gear such as respirators and ventilators to fight the novel coronavirus. “Respirators, ventilators, all of the equipment—try getting it yourselves,” the president said. “We will be backing you, but try getting it yourselves. Point of sales, much better, much more direct if you can get it yourself.” The president’s remarks came amid growing fears of a national shortage of ventilators.

Yet on Monday, after Governors on both coasts announced regional plans for reopening their states, Trump asserted “total authority” over decisions about when and how to emerge after coronavirus shutdowns.  “When somebody’s president of the United States, the authority is total,” Trump said.

Then finally, today, Trump completed his reversal, telling Governors “you are going to call your own shots,” as his administration distributed new guidelines meant to help states loosen their social distancing restrictions.

Trump also stumbled greatly when trying to evade blame for ‘wasting’ the month of February in responding to COVID-19, during a now famous exchange with CBS News Reporter Paula Reid.

You can also watch this episode here on Twitter/Periscope.

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