“This is a matter of utmost urgency for the health of every American,” Schumer wrote to the president earlier in the day. “Regrettably, our national response is far behind where it should be. But by acting now, there is still time to help protect our medical professionals, reduce suffering, and save lives.”
In response, Trump — who throughout March compared COVID-19 to the seasonal flu — dismissed the requests as “incorrect sound bites.”
“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,” the US president asserted.
Despite the shortage, Trump, in his letter, claimed he did not need to invoke the Defense Production Act as the mere threat of doing so was enough to get companies to “do whatever we are asking.” In a March 27 tweet, for example, he told Ford Motor Company to “GET GOING ON VENTILATORS, FAST!!!!!!”