House Speaker Nancy Pelosi slammed President Trump Sunday for wanting to “slow down” on coronavirus testing, and vowed to get answers from his administration later this week.
“Testing, tracing, treatment and social distancing are the only tools we have to stop the spread of the coronavirus, but President Trump orders his Administration to slow down the testing that saves lives,” she said in a statement. “The American people are owed answers about why President Trump wants less testing when experts say much more is needed.”
Mrs. Pelosi, California Democrat, said that members of the president’s coronavirus task force will have to answer for his remarks when they testify this week in front of the Energy and Commerce Committee.
At his rally in Tulsa Saturday evening, Mr. Trump defended his performance on handling the pandemic but said widespread testing is making him look bad.
“You’re gonna find more people, you’re gonna find more cases. I said to my people, ‘Slow the testing down, please,’” he said.
Mr. Trump faced a wave of backlash and criticism for holding the crowded rally without social distancing despite cases of COVID-19 still rising the country.
White House trade adviser Peter Navarro defended President Trump’s comments about testing on Sunday, saying his remarks at the rally were “tongue-in-cheek” made in a “light moment.”
The U.S. has tested over 25 million people for the coronavirus. There are more than 2.2 million confirmed cases and about 120,000 deaths in the country, according to data from Johns Hopkins University.
“The President is ethically unfit and intellectually unprepared to lead. Senator McConnell must stop obstructing the Heroes Act and the life-saving testing resources it provides,” Mrs. Pelosi concluded.
The House’s Heroes Act, which they passed in mid-May, is a $3 trillion coronavirus stimulus package that isn’t going anywhere in the GOP-controlled Senate that is wary of passing any more big-budget items.
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