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Inslee: 'Maddening' to hear Pence 'talk about how things are just hunky-dory'

Washington Gov. Jay InsleeJay Robert InsleeBiden leans on Obama-era appointees on climate Thousands of troops dig in for inauguration OVERNIGHT ENERGY: Nine, including former Michigan governor, charged over Flint water crisis | Regulator finalizes rule forcing banks to serve oil, gun companies | Trump admin adds hurdle to increase efficiency standards for furnaces, water heaters MORE (D) blasted the White House’s response to the coronavirus pandemic, accusing President TrumpDonald TrumpMore than two-thirds of Americans approve of Biden's coronavirus response: poll Sarah Huckabee Sanders to run for governor Mexico's president tests positive for COVID-19 MORE of politicizing mitigation measures and saying Vice President Pence has created an overly optimistic picture of the situation.

“When I heard the vice president talk about how things are just hunky-dory, it’s just maddening,” Inslee said on CBS’s “Face the Nation” Sunday. “The situation is critical in many places across the United States and all the happy thoughts and wishful thinking in the world is not going to wash that away.”

Inslee called on Trump to show leadership on wearing masks, saying: “We know that’s the solution from a health standpoint and a way to reopen the economy,” and saying that “from day one” the president has “downplayed and distorted and disabled our ability to fight this war.”

“The moment Donald Trump tweeted he wanted to liberate Michigan from the health messages of [Michigan] Governor [Gretchen] Whitmer [D], all of the people wearing MAGA hats decided they didn’t want to help out as much,” Inslee added.

The Washington governor went on to excoriate the president for focusing on the vandalism of monuments as coronavirus numbers continue to climb.

“We need a president who will care more about living Americans and less about dead Confederates,” he said.

Inslee said more progress could be made if mitigation efforts were not seen as a political issue.

“If we can get everyone wearing a MAGA hat to wear a mask, we are going to contain this virus,” he said. “This is the way to open our economy, if we get people to mask up and reopen our economy, that’ll be a good day for everyone.”