6 months and 1,000 deaths later, Obama declared H1N1 a public health emergency

by WorldTribune Staff, March 2, 2020

The swine flu, or H1N1, was first reported to have been detected in the United States in April 2009.

At the end of April 2009, President Barack Obama addressed Americans briefly, saying that U.S. health officials were monitoring the situation.

President Donald Trump declared coronavirus a health emergency one month after China first reported it. President Barack Obama waited six months to declare H1N1 a health emergency.

Obama said he had requested $1.5 billion from Congress to support the government’s efforts.

In October 2009, the director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) told CNN, “millions of people in the United States have been infected, at least 20,000 have been hospitalized and more than 1,000 have died.”

Obama declared H1N1 a public health emergency on Oct. 24, 2009.

Few if any Democrats complained about Obama’s handling of the outbreak.

China first reported the Wuhan coronavirus to the World Health Organization on Dec. 31, 2019.

President Donald Trump declared coronavirus a public health emergency On Jan. 31, 2020.

Among the steps the Trump administration took upon the Jan. 31 declaration:

  • Restricting U.S. access to non-citizens from China. Flights filled with U.S. citizens who were in Wuhan were brought to America and those people were quarantined on U.S. military bases for two weeks.
  • U.S. citizens who have been in China’s Hubei province during the past 14 days and are returning to the U.S. States will undergo health screenings and be monitored during mandatory quarantines of up to 14 days, officials said.
  • [Secretary of Health and Human Services Alex] Azar also announced a temporary suspension of entry into the United States of foreign nationals who pose a risk for the transmission of the coronavirus.

Democrats and their allies in the corporate media have criticized Trump’s every move on the coronavirus, from complaining that no minorities were on the task force the president set up in late January to saying Trump didn’t ask for enough funds from Congress to combat the virus.

In a Feb. 5 tweet, which has since been deleted, Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer wrote: “The premature travel ban to and from China by the current administration is just an excuse to further his ongoing war against immigrants. There must be a check and Balance on these restrictions.”

Trump tweeted on March 2: “I was criticized by the Democrats when I closed the Country down to China many weeks ahead of what almost everyone recommended. Saved many lives. Dems were working the Impeachment Hoax. They didn’t have a clue! Now they are fear mongering. Be calm & vigilant!”

Donald Trump Jr. lashed out Friday at his father’s critics, saying, “Anything that they can use to try to hurt Trump, they will.”

“For them to try to take a pandemic and seemingly hope that it comes here and kills millions of people, so that they could end Donald Trump’s streak of winning, is a new level of sickness,” Trump Jr. said on “Fox & Friends.”

His comment prompted CNN’s Jake Tapper to ask Vice President Mike Pence: “I don’t expect you to criticize the president’s son, but you don’t think that Democrats want people to contract this disease, do you?”

Pence replied, “I think that was Don Jr.’s point, that there has been some very strong rhetoric directed at the president by some members of Congress and political commentators.”

Pressed by NBC’s Chuck Todd to provide an example, the vice president cited Wednesday’s op-ed by New York Times columnist Gail Collins headlined, “Let’s call it Trumpvirus.”

“When you see voices on our side pushing back on outrageous and irresponsible rhetoric on the other side, I think that’s important, and I think it’s justified,” Pence said.

Republican Senator Tom Cotton said on Friday that “The single most consequential and valuable thing done to stop this virus from already spreading throughout the United States was when President Trump decided to shut down travel to China last month.” He also acknowledged that “the so-called experts who opposed the decision at the time” eventually admitted that it “bought valuable time to prevent the spread of this virus in the United States.”

The World Health Organization noted: “Air-traffic data shows that flights from China to the United States dropped much more than they did to Europe. As of this writing, a single case not connected to any known transmission has turned up in California, but there are no indications of large outbreaks like those in Italy and Iran.”

PJ Media’s Matt Margolis wrote on Feb. 29: “But we’re not seeing Trump get any credit for this in the media, or from Democrats, are we? Nope. They’ve politicized the coronavirus epidemic, using lies to attack Trump in the hopes it will help defeat him in November.”

In a March 1 op-ed for RedState, Elizabeth Vaughn noted: “The Trump administration took decisive action to minimize the impact of the coronavirus in the first month. The disease had been declared a public health emergency one month before the first U.S. death. Despite the unwarranted criticism coming from the left, the government appears to be focused on protecting Americans.

“When asked what more the Trump administration could be doing, Democrats have no real answers. But that doesn’t stop them.”

Meanwhile, security correspondent Bill Gertz had a different blame thought: “Trade deal with China for President Trump to pursue: Make Beijing pay for the damage caused by the Wuhan virus. They have trillions in cash reserves and China’s Communist Party should be held accountable for China making the world sick with new microbes.”

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