Nancy Pelosi: COVID-19 Is ‘The Trump Virus’
House speaker politicizes virus to slam president
Democratic House Speaker Nancy Pelosi referred to the coronavirus as the "Trump virus," blasting the president's response to the pandemic.
Pelosi told CNN's Wolf Blitzer that Trump had made a bad situation worse "because of his inaction."
"Clearly it is the Trump virus," Pelosi declared.
During Tuesday’s broadcast of CNN’s “Situation Room,” Pelosi said Trump could have made mask-wearing mandatory instead of holding rallies and making masks "a manhood thing."
"If he had said months ago 'let's wear masks; let's socially distance,' instead of having rallies and whatever they were, then more people would have followed his lead," she said.
“If it’s important to wear a mask now, it would have been important to wear it in March,” Pelosi said.
"A briefing on the coronavirus should be about science, and that's something he has ignored," she said.
"It should be about governance, and now he is finally embracing that it's OK to wear a mask."
"You are saying thousands of Americans have died because of what the president has done or not done. Is that what you are saying?"
"Yes, that's what I'm saying," Pelosi said.
Watch: On CNN, Pelosi is now calling it the “Trump virus” pic.twitter.com/2U1gl3e9nb— TV News HQ (@TVNewsHQ) July 22, 2020
"I think it's clearly evident," she added.
Pelosi claimed Tuesday's somber briefing showed that Trump had finally realized it was not a hoax.
“Well, I think with the president’s comments today, he recognized the mistakes that he has made, by now embracing mask-wearing, and the recognition this is not a hoax, it is a pandemic, that has gotten worse before it will get better.
"Because of his inaction, and, in fact, clearly, it is the Trump virus.”
Pelosi in June called for a “long overdue” mandatory face mask requirement to be implemented across the US.
The House speaker also claimed the current non-mandatory requirement by the Centers for Disease Control was to avoid "offending" President Trump.
The face masks guidance by the CDC has altered frequently since the coronavirus pandemic.
The agency advised at the beginning of the pandemic that wearing a face mask would make little difference.
Months later, it began recommending that face masks should be worn outside of the home when 6 feet of social distance cannot be maintained.
"Cloth face coverings are meant to protect other people in case the wearer is unknowingly infected but does not have symptoms," the CDC said.
Earlier this month, Trump said that while he supports wearing face masks to prevent transmission of COVID-19, he said he didn't support making them mandatory.