Do not let them get away with this lie.
McConnell is pushing this new lie that Trump was so distracted and completely occupied by his impeachment, he just didn’t have any time to prepare a national response to COVID-19.
This is a giant lie, what George Conaway calls “Gaslighting of the highest order.”
Look at the calendar. The impeachment trial ended on Feb. 5. In reality, it was over before it even started, thanks in large part to McConnell. The only drama was about whether there’d be any witnesses — and that ended on Jan. 31, when the Senate voted not to hear testimony. That left plenty of time to deal with the virus.
And while some lawyers in the executive branch and Congress were working on impeachment around the clock, impeachment didn’t consume the government. Trump managed to get to Mar-a-Lago at least four times in January and February, working in a few rounds of golf along the way. He held five campaign rallies around the country during the impeachment trial.
Trump even had the bandwidth during the trial to comment on the coronavirus: On Jan. 22, he told CNBC “we have it totally under control. It’s one person coming in from China.” On Jan. 24, he tweeted, “China has been working very hard to contain the Coronavirus. The United States greatly appreciates their efforts and transparency. It will all work out well. In particular, on behalf of the American People, I want to thank President Xi!” On Jan. 30, at a speech in Michigan, he said again, “We think we have it very well under control.” On Feb. 2, referring to his administration’s Jan. 31 order partially banning travel from China, Trump told Sean Hannity, “We pretty much shut it down coming in from China.”
Most importantly, impeachment didn’t keep U.S. intelligence agencies from warning the president and Congress in January and February about the danger of the virus. In particular, as Josh Rogin wrote, impeachment notwithstanding, “throughout January and much of February, senior Trump administration officials heatedly debated the scope and scale of the coronavirus pandemic.”
Nothing is going to stop Trump and his Fascist allies from lying about everything, and all of us who know the truth have a duty to keep repeating the truth.
The problem wasn’t impeachment — it was the president. There was never any chance that the government was going to take sufficient action on the virus when the president himself wasn’t taking the virus seriously. It was Trump, after all, who claimed — at the very end of February, weeks after the impeachment trial had ended — that criticisms such as Murphy’s were a “hoax” and that “within a couple days,” the number of coronavirus cases “is going to be down to close to zero.”
Trump is a catastrophic disaster for America and the world. If McConnell and his party took their oaths of office seriously, if they cared at ALL about the rule of law, they would have voted to remove Trump from office.
Instead, because Republicans care only about their own money and power, we are facing the greatest public health crisis in a generation, with a malignant narcissist at the top of the federal government, who is incapable of leading us through it.