President Donald Trump on Saturday told Tulsa, Oklahoma rally-goers that he told officials to “slow the testing down” because “you’re going to find more cases.” Forced to respond after numerous questions from reporters, and massive complaints online, the White House claimed Trump was just joking.
“Come on now, that was tongue in cheek,” Peter Navarro told CNN’s Jake Tapper. “That was a light moment for him at a rally.”
But Democrats say, as NBC News reports, the Trump administration “has been sitting on nearly $14 billion in funding that Congress passed for coronavirus testing and contact tracing.” The White House has refused to allocate the funds.
There’s more not done.
Top Democrats sent a letter to HHS Secretary Alex Azar saying “the Trump administration has ‘still failed’ to distribute more than $8 billion out of $25 billion appropriated by Congress to expand testing and contact tracing,” NBC adds.
The CDC is holding back $4 billion that was to be used for surveillance and contact tracing at the state and local levels and tribal territories.
“Testing is a double-edged sword,” Trump declared Saturday night to an audience of less than 6200 people in a stadium that holds over 19,000. “When you do testing to that extent, you’re going to find more people, you’re going to find more cases, so I said to my people, ‘Slow the testing down, please.'”
“Here’s the bad part: When you do testing to that extent, you’re gonna find more people, you’re gonna find more cases. So I said to my people, ‘slow the testing down please!'” — Trump pic.twitter.com/m5MOV9je70
— Aaron Rupar (@atrupar) June 21, 2020
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