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Thomas Gallatin / Mar. 20, 2020

Refuting the False Narrative on the Administration's COVID-19 Response

The president's reelection campaign released a list of 56 "decisive actions" his administration has taken.

While much of the Leftmedia’s narrative on President Donald Trump’s handling of the China Virus pandemic is that it has been bungled and late responding, the timeline of the administration’s actions don’t support those conclusions. Far from it.

However, since that false narrative has been so widely disseminated, especially by Trump’s political adversaries in the mainstream media, he pushed back by releasing a list of 56 “decisive actions” he and his administration took from the earliest days after learning of the coronavirus outbreak in Wuhan, China.

This response was needed to set the record straight and specifically to refute presumed Democrat presidential nominee Joe Biden’s false assertion last week: “This virus laid bare the severe shortcomings of the current administration. Public fears are being compounded by pervasive lack of trust in this president fueled by adversarial relationships with the truth that he continues to have.” In fact, Biden’s assertions were so demonstrably wrong that even the left-leaning fact-checking organization PolitiFact labeled them “mostly false.”

Here are a few highlights from the list of the decisive actions Trump and his administration took following China’s first reporting the discovery of the novel coronavirus to the World Health Organization on December 31, 2019.

January 6: The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) issued a travel notice for Wuhan, China due to the spreading coronavirus.

January 17: The CDC began implementing public health entry screening at the 3 U.S. airports that received the most travelers from Wuhan — San Francisco, New York JFK, and Los Angeles.

January 20: Dr. [Anthony] Fauci announces the National Institutes of Health is already working on the development of a vaccine for the coronavirus.

January 23: The CDC sought a “special emergency authorization” from the FDA to allow states to use its newly developed coronavirus test.

January 31: The Trump administration: Declared the coronavirus a public health emergency. Announced Chinese travel restrictions. Suspended entry into the United States for foreign nationals who pose a risk of transmitting the coronavirus.

February 6: The CDC began shipping CDC-Developed test kits for the 2019 Novel Coronavirus to U.S. and international labs.

February 9: The White House Coronavirus Task Force briefed governors from across the nation at the National Governors’ Association Meeting in Washington.

February 24: The Trump Administration sent a letter to Congress requesting at least $2.5 billion to help combat the spread of the coronavirus.

February 29: The Trump Administration: Announced a level 4 travel advisory to areas of Italy and South Korea. Barred all travel to Iran. Barred the entry of foreign citizens who visited Iran in the last 14 days.

March 4: The Trump Administration announced the purchase of approximately 500 million N95 respirators over the next 18 months to respond to the outbreak of the novel coronavirus.

March 6: President Trump signed an $8.3 billion bill to fight the coronavirus outbreak.

March 11: President Trump: Announced travel restrictions on foreigners who had visited Europe in the last 14 days.

March 13: President Trump declared a national emergency in order to access $42 billion in existing funds to combat the coronavirus.

March 18: President Trump announced: Temporary closure of the U.S.-Canada border to non-essential traffic. Plans to invoke the Defense Production Act in order to increase the number of necessary supplies needed to combat coronavirus. FEMA has been activated in every region at its highest level of response. The U.S. Navy will deploy USNS Comfort and USNS Mercy hospital ships. All foreclosures and evictions will be suspended for a period of time.

March 18: HHS temporarily suspended a regulation that prevents doctors from practicing across state lines.

It is clear that, far from Biden’s claims and the Leftmedia’s false narrative, Trump and his administration have been actively engaged in addressing, preparing for, and now combating the China Virus from the earliest days when the threat first became known. Finally, it is important to highlight Trump’s embrace of federalism as part of his response, as he has left key decisions to state and local governments.

(Updated.)

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