NM Gov. Lujan Grisham: Trump Campaign Is ‘Stoking Fear’ Because His ‘Failure in Leadership’

Sunday on ABC’s “This Week,” New Mexico Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham (D) said the President Donald Trump’s reelection pitch was about “stoking fear” because he had no accomplishments to herald.

Partial transcript as follows:

STEPHANOPOULOS: It comes at a time when the Trump campaign is running a series of ads, including in New Mexico, about the issue of crime. Let’s take a look.


TRUMP CAMPAIGN AD: You have reached the 911 police emergency line. Due to defunding of the police department, we’re sorry, but no one is here to take your call. Leave your number and someone will get back to you. Our estimated wait time is currently five days. Good-bye.


STEPHANOPOULOS: It says Joe Biden support defunding police. You won’t be in safe in Joe Biden’s America. Your response?

LUJAN GRISHAM: Outrageous. It’s really terrible that we’re going to have an election a hundred days out, instead of talking about what people really want us to address, right, and want to know what we’re going to do about public health and healthcare. They want to know about economic security. They want to talk about how we unify this country.

And instead, if you’re looking at defunding police, again, Albuquerque is missing. I think, about $9.6 million from the Trump administration as a direct investment in both police investments so that we’ve got enough officers doing enough preventative work on the streets and, simultaneously, we’re doing a ton of good, productive, proactive race relations work.

So, it — it is really about stoking fear. It isn’t about — and there isn’t anything else you can point to 100 days out where you succeeded. The economy is in turmoil and in trouble. We can’t do public health. We are in real crisis in terms of combating COVID-19. We are seeing a failure in leadership. So let’s go to making people fearful. So, it’s disappointing, but frankly expected.

STEPHANOPOULOS: I do want to talk about that COVID crisis. I want to put up a chart right now showing what’s happening in New Mexico. Your cases have been on a rise, a real spike right there. You had the highest cases of the year on Thursday, hospitalizations and deaths are going up as well.

I know you put a pause on reopening earlier this month, but is it time to do more?

LUJAN GRISHAM: Yeah, we are very serious here, you can see that. New Mexico, for weeks, was in the green in terms of being ready to reopen following CDC guidelines, one of the first states clearly to do a shutdown, to cancel schools, to mandate masks.

But here — here’s the problem — and you’re right, we are seeing record high daily averages. We are actually seeing a reduction in hospitalizations, but our death count is still way too high, and these mortality issues, these are people’s loved ones, right? Every single time I have to announce that we’ve lost someone in New Mexico, it is the most painful experience.

We flattened the curve again in New Mexico, but the case count is way too high, and while we have one of the lowest positivity rates in the country, which we worked diligently at happening. What’s going on around the country affects everyone in the country.

We are moving and traveling. I have got commuters and workers and federal employees and bases. My goodness, in fact, in our corrections issues, it’s been the movement of ICE detainees, without testing them, without following New Mexico’s COVID safe practices, that brought COVID in to our corrections facilities.

So, we are at the mercy of what’s going on around the country, no national strategy, no public health investment. It — start with, it’s a hoax that we’re not going to invest, way, way too long before you talk about either pausing, suspending. You have got — you have got the president now, we’re not going to have a convention, that’s not safe, but we want everyone to reopen schools immediately. Makes no sense whatsoever.


LUJAN GRISHAM: There is no national strategy.

I still spend most of my days chasing testing supplies for our state. It is the worst abdication of a national response and responsibility to protect Americans I have ever seen in my government career.

Follow Pam Key on Twitter @pamkeyNEN


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