Pelosi defends prioritizing impeachment over virus threat

by WorldTribune Staff, April 3, 2020

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi in an April 2 interview said she was aware of the coronavirus threat but defended prioritizing the impeachment of President Donald Trump.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi. / C-SPAN

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell told radio host Hugh Hewitt that the first reports of the outbreak in China and the threat to the United States surfaced while Trump’s impeachment trial was occurring in the Senate and dominating news coverage.

“It came up while we were tied down on the impeachment trial,” McConnell said. “And I think it diverted the attention of the government, because everything every day was all about impeachment.”

Pelosi accused Trump and McConnell of using the Democrats’ partisan impeachment spectacle as “an excuse” for why she insisted the administration was slow to respond to the coronavirus threat.

“We have a life and death situation in our country and they should not try to hide behind an excuse for why they did not take action, but it does admit that they did not take action,” Pelosi said.

“They can’t handle their jobs, I guess,” Pelosi added. “What are they saying? We ignored it? It was self-evident. Most people knew about it and certainly those of responsibility. So I say of that, either you can’t handle your job, but don’t blame impeachment on that. Just blame it on the fact that you didn’t want to face the reality, and that denial and that delay cost lives.”

RedState columnist Nick Arama wrote: “Really? Ok, let’s compare. Trump in January formed the White House virus task force, activated the CDC, cut travel with China and declared a public health emergency. All while under impeachment from the Democrats.

“What did the Democrats do about the virus in January? Their presumptive nominee was suggesting that cutting travel was ‘xenophobia’ and in February and even into March they were still encouraging people to go out to events like the Chinese New Year parades and Mardi Gras.”

Pelosi also ignored Trump’s mention of the virus during his State of the Union address on Feb 4. “Remember, she tore up the speech and said it was full of ‘lies,’ ” Arama wrote.

Arama noted that if the coronavirus threat was “self-evident,” why was Pelosi “in denial and delay? Why was she encouraging people to go to parades packed with people in crowded San Francisco? Isn’t she supposed to be one of ‘those of responsibility?’ She wants to try to blame Trump and Republicans, but if she said she ‘knew’ then why was she encouraging people to go out and risking their lives?”

During a tour of San Francisco’s Chinatown on Feb. 24, Pelosi said: ““We do want to say to people, come to Chinatown, here we are … come join us.”

Arama noted: “How many people got sick because of such encouragement by Pelosi and other Democrats like NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio?”

Moreover, Arama added “if she ‘knew’ and was concerned about ‘delay’ and ‘denial,’ why did she delay getting help and relief to the American people? Why did she hold up the virus relief bill for a week in the interests of getting her Democratic pork and pet programs through?”

“It isn’t Trump who has a lot to answer for, Nancy, it’s you,” Arama wrote.

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