Trump blasts Schumer over ‘incorrect sound bites’ on coronavirus

Greg Nash

President Trump lashed out at Senate Minority Leader Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.) on Thursday, accusing him of “incorrect sound bites” on the administration’s coronavirus relief efforts in the latest war of words between the two New Yorkers.

Trump, in a two-page letter released by the White House, called the Democratic leader a “bad” senator and argued that he could lose a primary against Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.).

“Thank you for your Democrat public relations letter and incorrect sound bites, which are wrong in every way,” Trump wrote in the opening of the letter, before going on to discuss the administration’s efforts on the coronavirus.

Trump’s letter comes after Schumer sent a letter on Thursday morning urging the president to choose a military officer to serve as a czar to oversee the production and disbursement of medical equipment and supplies, amid reports from states and hospitals that they are under-equipped for the growing number of coronavirus cases. 

“The existing federal leadership void has left America with an ugly spectacle in which States and cities are literally fending for themselves, often in conflict and competition with each other, when trying to procure precious medical supplies and equipment,” Schumer wrote.

Trump, in his letter, noted that Vice President Pence is overseeing the administration’s coronavirus task force and referred to Rear Adm. John Polowczyk, who is leading FEMA’s supply chain task force.

Trump also took personal shots at Schumer, accusing Democrats of wasting time on a “ridiculous impeachment hoax” and accusing the senior New York senator of being “missing in action” from the administration’s discussions with New York officials on federal aid being given to the state.

“If you spent less time on your ridiculous impeachment hoax, which went haplessly on forever and ended up going nowhere (except increasing my poll numbers) and instead focused on helping the people of New York, then New York would not have been so completely unprepared for the ‘invisible enemy.’ No wonder AOC and others are thinking about running against you in the primary. If they did, they would likely win,” Trump wrote.

Republicans have increasingly pointed to the months-long impeachment saga as distracting Congress from getting in front of the looming health care pandemic. The Senate started its trial in mid-January and voted to acquit Trump of the two House-passed articles in early February. 

Schumer, however, urged the federal government on Jan. 26 to declare the coronavirus a public health emergency. Spokesmen for Schumer didn’t immediately respond to a request or comment on Trump’s letter Thursday evening.

Trump in his letter appeared to make an indirect jab at Schumer’s recent media blitz, saying the Democratic senator has “been missing in action, except when it comes to the ‘press.'”

“I’ve known you for many years, but I never knew how bad a senator you are for the state of New York until I became president,” he wrote. 

Tags Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez Coronavirus Donald Trump
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