Senator Mitch McConnell tore into Democrats for distracting lawmakers from being better equipped in dealing with the coronavirus pandemic.
The Majority Leader pointed out that Congress was still being pulled in the wrong direction by having to focus resources on the impeachment effort heralded by Nancy Pelosi and her resistance minions.
McConnell made the comments during a radio interview with Hugh Hewitt.
“It came up while we were tied down in the impeachment trial. And I think it diverted the attention of the government because everything every day was all about impeachment,” the Kentucky Republican recalled.
I will say these two additional things: 1) as I retweeted a little bit earlier, when I said “thrust is correct” I was not talking about thrust of the argument, but that I had captured the general intent of McConnell’s words even though I was unable to quote. 1/2
— Todd Shepherd (@shepherdreports) March 31, 2020
Consumed With Impeachment
McConnell’s comments echo those of Senator Tom Cotton (R-AR) who said he began studying the coronavirus problem in mid-January.
“I have to tell you that in mid-January and late-January, unfortunately, Washington, especially the Congress was consumed with another matter — you may recall the partisan impeachment of the president,” Cotton explained.
It’s good to hear officials admitting what many supporters of the President have believed for some time – the nation would have been better prepared if lawmakers weren’t distracted by a partisan impeachment sham.
On January 15th, the CDC reported that the coronavirus had arrived in America.
What were Democrats up to? After delaying sending over the articles of impeachment to the Senate for a month, Pelosi was all smiles, gleefully handing out pens while signing her articles of impeachment.
Even when everyone else was focused on impeachment, Tom Cotton was sounding the alarm about this virus, and has been an indispensable voice throughout https://t.co/Hl41B5gotG
— Rich Lowry (@RichLowry) March 26, 2020
Trump Wasn’t Distracted
While McConnell’s comments were more focused on Congress, one would hardly be off base if they thought President Trump himself may have been distracted by the whole ridiculous resistance affair.
But he wasn’t.
Former White House doctor Ronny Jackson said the President’s early actions were “going to save countless American lives.”
Democrat Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s failed leadership and lack of preparedness has been revealed for the entire world to see. Now, Cuomo is scrambling to shift blame and refusing to take full responsibility for his catastrophic failures. https://t.co/RJ9dO76Bez
— Breitbart News (@BreitbartNews) March 26, 2020
Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, credited Trump’s travel restrictions – implemented in the midst of the impeachment effort – with saving lives.
One of the key actions necessary to control the spread of the virus, Fauci explained, is to “contain the influx of people who are infected coming from the outside.”
In late January, while Democrats were entirely focused on impeachment, President Trump would issue travel restrictions with China, establish the Coronavirus Task Force, and declare coronavirus a public health emergency.
Imagine what could have been done – better planning to respond to the crisis, economic measures to stop job losses – if Democrats focused on America instead of their own political ambitions.
WASHINGTON (AP) - Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell says President Donald Trump's impeachment trial distracted the federal government from paying attention to the novel coronavirus as it reached the United States in January.
McConnell, a Kentucky Republican, told conservative radio host Hugh Hewitt on Tuesday that the deadly virus "came ...
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell says President Donald Trump's impeachment trial distracted the federal government from the novel coronavirus as it reached the United States in January, despite warnings at the time from public health experts and members of Congress about the spread of the virus. The Trump administration has been severely criticized for its slow response to the spreading pandemic, especially for the shortage of coronavirus testing kits when the infection first spread to the U.S. from China.
President Trump and his allies are increasingly blaming Democrats' impeachment drive for distracting Washington's attention from the coronavirus outbreak last winter.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, Kentucky Republican, said Tuesday that impeachment was a needless preoccupation while the pandemic was unfolding.
"It came up while we were tied down on ...
Sen. “Moscow” Mitch McConnell went on the Hugh Hewitt radio show Tuesday, as he often does when he wants to be especially awful. He was exceptionally awful in all the most predictable ways: blaming the crisis we're in right now on impeachment—because of course he did—and rewriting all of the last three months of history while doing it.
The slow response by President Donald Trump and Congress to the COVID-19 crisis, McConnell said, was because the impeachment "diverted the attention of the government." Except that's total bunk. The Senate was still functioning while the impeachment trial was going forward during the last week in January, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) was confirming the initial cases in the U.S. The business of the Senate included a Jan. 24 all-senators briefing on coronavirus with Trump health officials, including the CDC director and Dr. Anthony Fauci, the head of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases. You remember that meeting, right? That's the one that happened just before three Senate Republicans dumped millions’ worth of stocks, collectively. That's the action they decided to take when confronted with the calamity that had hit our shores.
In fact, Republican Sen. Chuck Grassley, who had received additional briefings, blew off the warnings. "The coronavirus doesn’t appear to pose any imminent threat to Americans who have not recently traveled to the Hubei province of China," he said. "For now, the Department of Health and Human Services and the Centers for Disease Control have the resources needed to prevent any significant contagion from spreading into the United States. If more resources are needed, Congress stands at the ready." He came to that conclusion on Feb. 4, the day before the Senate voted against the impeachment charges against Trump.
Continuing on with the rewriting of history in the Hewitt interview, McConnell gave credit to Arkansas Republican Sen. Tom Cotton for being "first" to warn of the dangers of coronavirus. "He was first. I think Tom was right on the mark." Right on the mark meaning spouting bigoted and dangerous conspiracy theories about how the virus might have been (wink, wink) a chemical weapon developed in "China's only biosafety level 4 super laboratory that researches human infectious diseases." Sure Mitch, you go ahead with the idea of Cotton being the big epidemiological brain in the Senate GOP.
Because it's Mitch, there's more. More typical Republican denial of the breadth and depth of this crisis, and how it's affecting real people. "I'm not going to allow this to be an opportunity for the Democrats to achieve unrelated policy items they wouldn't otherwise be able to pass," he sniffed, dismissing the necessity for further action by Congress to save the whole damned country. No, he's got his eyes on his true prize.
When the Senate gets back, it will "go back to judges. […] My motto for the rest of the year is to leave no vacancy behind."