Trump’s Administration Ignores Its Own Guidance, Refuses To Lead By Example
April 16, 2020
Not only did the Trump administration ignore months of warnings from experts about the pandemic, they are now ignoring their own guidance on how to mitigate the spread of the coronavirus. Instead of leading by example, Trump and his administration are making clear they don’t think the rules apply to them.
Ivanka Trump told Americans to play their part in stopping the spread by staying at home — but then she and Jared Kushner traveled to Trump’s Bedminster golf club in defiance of stay-at-home orders.
IVANKA: “Those lucky enough to be in a position to stay at home, please, please do so. Each and every one of us plays a role in slowing the spread.”
New York Times: “But Ms. Trump herself has not followed the federal guidelines advising against discretionary travel, leaving Washington for another one of her family’s homes, even as she has publicly thanked people for self-quarantining. And effective April 1, the city of Washington issued a stay-at-home order for all residents unless they are performing essential activities. Ms. Trump and her husband, Jared Kushner, who is also a senior White House adviser, traveled with their three children to the Trump National Golf Club Bedminster in New Jersey to celebrate the first night of Passover this month, according to two people with knowledge of their travel plans, even as seders across the country were canceled and families gathered remotely over apps like Zoom.”
Trump and Pence both told Americans to avoid discretionary travel — but they have both defied those recommendations.
March 16 — TRUMP: “Therefore, my administration is recommending that all Americans, including the young and healthy, work to engage in schooling from home when possible. Avoid gathering in groups of more than 10 people. Avoid discretionary travel.”
March 18 — PENCE: “Avoid social gatherings of more than 10 people, avoid eating and drinking at bars and restaurants and food courts, use the drive-through and pickup and delivery for restaurants, avoid discretionary travel.”
March 28 — NBC News: “President Donald Trump visited Norfolk, Va. on Saturday to see off the USNS Comfort, a Navy hospital ship that is headed to New York to provide extra space and support to medical workers in the fight against the coronavirus outbreak.”
April 18 — CBSN Denver: “Vice President Mike Pence will travel to the Air Force Academy in Colorado Springs for its pared down commencement ceremony on Saturday.”
April 21 — WSAW: “Vice President Mike Pence is traveling to Wisconsin next week to highlight the production of ventilators during the coronavirus pandemic.”
Trump announced the CDC was recommending people wear masks to avoid spreading coronavirus, but said he would not be wearing one himself.
TRUMP: “The CDC is advising the use of non-medical cloth face covering as an additional voluntary public health measure … I don’t think I am going to be doing it.’”
Trump’s coronavirus task force regularly violated their own guidance at briefings, huddling close by, shaking hands, and touching shared surfaces.
Washington Post: “The president and his task force give their daily briefings on the coronavirus pandemic huddled together — shoulder to shoulder, behind a single lectern in the White House press room. President Trump stands at the center of this essential group with Vice President Pence to his left. On Wednesday afternoon, there were four other officials in this task force cluster — all standing within sneezing, coughing and spitting distance of one another.”
CNBC: “President Donald Trump and other U.S. officials appeared to disregard recommended health guidelines on preventing the spread of respiratory illnesses Friday by shaking hands, touching their faces and sharing a microphone at a press conference declaring the coronavirus a national emergency.”
Trump’s health department ignored health guidance and kept its gym open.
March 16 — Associated Press: “Washington, D.C., is shutting down all movie theaters and gyms, and ordering restaurants and bars to serve only takeout, as the nation’s capital continues to ramp up its social distancing measures to stem the spread of the coronavirus.”
March 26 — Politico: “The federal health department kept its own fitness center open even as the coronavirus outbreak raged and private gyms shuttered their doors. Staff at the Health and Human Services department received an email on Wednesday afternoon, which was shared with POLITICO, reminding them that ‘the HHS fitness center remains open.’”