Day 1,163: Trump yells at GM to open plant they don’t own to produce respirators he said weren’t needed 12 hours earlier
Another day, another frenetic and unhinged flip-flop from Donald Trump in the fight against coronavirus.
Thursday evening he appeared on Sean Hannity’s show, to be interviewed by one of his biggest cheerleaders. Trump told Hannity that he believed, based on nothing more than a hunch, apparently, that the amount of equipment and ventilators needed to fight the disease will be far less than the amount doctors and governors are begging for.
By Friday morning Trump did a complete 180-degree turn, absent any explanation. Suddenly, he was demanding General Motors start producing “much needed Ventilators [sic]” out of their “abandoned Lordstown plant in Ohio” unless they wanted him to “[i]nvoke ‘P’”. The desperation was palpable from the target, a car company, in addition to the all-caps tweet-screams and the dozen exclamation points.
Trump clarified that “Invoke ‘P’” meant compel GM to produce ventilators under the Defense Production Act. Many have wondered for weeks why Trump hasn’t already invoked the act to cure the shortfall of health equipment.
As usual, Trump was speaking out of total ignorance.
That “abandoned” GM plant he demanded they open? GM sold it months ago.
Throughout this crisis — like virtually every other major event of his presidency — Trump has acted erratically, played to TV cameras and been prone to wild swings based on the side of the bed he wakes up on. Protecting the lives of Americans has been nowhere near a top priority.
1,163 days in, 299 to go
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