Wednesday, during an appearance on Fox News Channel’s “The Story,” White House chief of staff Mark Meadows defended President Donald Trump’s remarks to Bob Woodward about his efforts to prevent a panic in the early stages of the COVID-19 pandemic.
According to Meadows, Trump’s comments were a show of “transparency.”
“I think any great leader, what they do is they take information that they have, they make sure that they vet it with, in this case, it was with their advisers, both doctors and those within the White House to actually make sure that we made prudent decisions,” Meadows explained. “But what we — you don’t want to do is create panic. But at the same time, it was an all hands on deck. I can tell you, not only did that happen in January and February, but when I came on board in March, it was around-the-clock, vigilant effort to make sure that this president did everything he could to address it.”
“But I can also say that what we know now about the virus is different than what we knew at that time, because a lot of the scientific advisors who were — and doctors who were saying, listen, we can contain this, we can make sure that we keep it in Washington State and California, and it’s not going to be as big of a problem,” he continued. “And yet, this president was consistent in saying that we needed to do everything we could. He shut down the — literally the economy on the advice of doctors to try to make sure that we mitigated the damage. And yet, he’s been one of the most transparent presidents as it came to dealing with this situation, whether it’s on a phone call with Woodward or anybody else.”
Meadows also criticized Trump’s Democratic presidential opponent Joe Biden for his efforts to use the pandemic for “political gain.”
“It doesn’t surprise me that Joe Biden will jump on this unprecedented pandemic and try to use it for political gain,” he said. “We’ve seen that over and over again. So, let me — let me just frame it this way. If we — he had done what Joe Biden, the candidate, recommended, we wouldn’t have shut down travel from China. We wouldn’t have shut down travel from Europe. And when Joe Biden was sitting there condemning the president because he was a candidate for the highest office in the land, this president was actually taking action. So, this doesn’t surprise me. Most people are going to see this as more of Joe Biden complaining about what he didn’t do, and maybe what he ought to focus on is what he didn’t do over the last 47 years.”
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