In Latest Briefing, Trump Downplays Americans’ Struggles

In his latest briefing, Trump wrote off the economic struggles of millions of Americans who have lost their jobs, saying he has a “feeling” things will get better. It’s no wonder Americans don’t trust his hunches.

Trump claimed we were making progress on the economic front, despite 16 million Americans losing their jobs over the past three weeks.

CNN’s Daniel Dale: “The briefing has started. Trump says they are making progress on the ‘economic front of this war.’ He touts the Fed announcement today and his administration’s effort to ‘replenish’ the ‘incredibly successful’ Paycheck Protection Program.”

Trump once again wrote off the struggles of the millions of Americans who lost their jobs, saying he has a feeling the economy will do very well after the pandemic.

CNN’s Daniel Dale: “Asked what he’d say to newly unemployed Americans who fear the economy won’t just bounce back, Trump says, ‘Well I think the economy is going to do very well. Now that’s just my feeling. It’s a strong feeling. I’ve had good, proper feelings about a lot of things over the years.’”

Trump falsely claimed that we have the best testing system and dismissed the idea that it needed to be significantly ramped up before reopening the country.

PBS NewsHour’s Yamiche Alcindor: “President Trump: We have right now the best testing system in the world. He adds officials will be doing wide testing in ‘certain areas’ and doing  ‘massive testing’ even though it’s ‘not necessary.’ (There are still parts of the country where there are problems getting tests.)”

CNN’s Jim Acosta: “Trump says US doesn’t need to have a nationwide testing system in order for Americans to go back to work: ‘We want to have it and we’re going to see if we have it. Do you need it? No. Is it a nice thing to do? Yes.’”

Politico: “Two former FDA commissioners, both with bipartisan credibility, are working with lawmakers on a framework to gradually restart the economy — as long as the country builds an ample testing and disease surveillance system to rapidly diagnose coronavirus, isolate infected people and effectively quarantine their close contacts.”

Trump continued to tout his small business loan program’s “very successful rollout,” but banks and small businesses say it was a failure.

Bloomberg’s Cheryl Bolen: “Trump rejects idea that small business owners and community banks are having problems accessing funds for paycheck protection program. ‘I’m hearing it’s a very, very successful rollout,’ he says”

Bloomberg: “Community banks have experienced delays in accessing the SBA’s website for the program, created by the coronavirus stimulus President Donald Trump signed last month, and many are locked out of the system because they haven’t obtained authorization numbers, the group said in the draft letter to Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and SBA Administrator Jovita Carranza.”

Politico: “Since the so-called Paycheck Protection Program launched April 3, banks have struggled to process a barrage of loan applications amid constant technical breakdowns and a lack of guidance from the Trump administration.”

Trump continues to boast that he was right in saying states did not need as many ventilators as estimated, but even though he’s moved on, states are still worried about ventilator shortages. 

CBS News’ Mark Knoller: “‘We are really in good shape,’ says Pres Trump of protective gear for hospital workers. Sees no need to call back PPE items sent abroad. Says US has enough ventilators and may soon help other nations with their supplies.”

NBC Boston’s Abbey Niezgoda: “On that note, @MassGovernor says he’s fighting for more equipment and PPE. Only a fraction of the state’s ventilator order from the federal government showed up. ‘Until it actually arrives, it doesn’t exist,’ he said.”