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Fri May 1, 2020, 11:02 AM

Should Republicans Be Sanctioned for Doubling Down on China's Failures?

There is a great deal of irony with Republicans threatening a series of sanctions against China based on its three week delay in identifying COVID-19 as a possible new disease on December 31st and declaring a widely publicized lockdown in Wuhan on January 23rd. Three weeks.

https://www.businessinsider.com/coronavirus-pandemic-timeline-history-major-events-2020-3

Based on this three week delay, you have Republicans clamoring for punishing China for this delay and minimizing the threat of COVID-19. Okay, lets go with this. Presumably by January 23rd at the latest, the Trump administration was aware that the entire Wuhan province had been placed in quarantine. Heck, on January 27th, Joe Biden saw the risk of a pandemic and wrote an editorial describing this risk:

https://www.usatoday.com/story/opinion/2020/01/27/coronavirus-donald-trump-made-us-less-prepared-joe-biden-column/4581710002/

The possibility of a pandemic is a challenge Donald Trump is unqualified to handle as president. I remember how Trump sought to stoke fear and stigma during the 2014 Ebola epidemic. He called President Barack Obama a “dope” and “incompetent” and railed against the evidence-based response our administration put in place — which quelled the crisis and saved hundreds of thousands of lives — in favor of reactionary travel bans that would only have made things worse. He advocated abandoning exposed and infected American citizens rather than bringing them home for treatment.

Trump’s demonstrated failures of judgment and his repeated rejection of science make him the worst possible person to lead our country through a global health challenge.

The outbreak of a new coronavirus, which has already infected more than 2,700 people and killed over 80 in China, will get worse before it gets better. Cases have been confirmed in a dozen countries, with at least five in the United States. There will likely be more.


Yet, aside from a few travel bans with broad exceptions for returning Americans, the Trump administration did nothing to prepare and minimized the threat with Trump saying that it would just go away. Indeed, it is not until March 13, three months after the emergence of COVID-19, that Trump declares a National Emergency nearly a week after Italy had to declare a nationwide lockdown.

Finally, even as other developed countries have been able to implement widespread testing, Republicans are now clamoring to re-open the U.S. even as death rates continue to escalate in parts of the country and the number of deaths grows past 60,000.

So, if China should get serious sanctions for three weeks, shouldn't Trump and Republicans get sanctions for three months of delays, denials and cover-ups?

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Reply Should Republicans Be Sanctioned for Doubling Down on China's Failures? (Original post)
TomCADem May 2020 OP
Proud Liberal Dem May 2020 #1
TomCADem May 2020 #2

Response to TomCADem (Original post)

Fri May 1, 2020, 12:11 PM

1. And deaths

Don't forget deaths

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Response to Proud Liberal Dem (Reply #1)

Fri May 1, 2020, 12:17 PM

2. The U.S. Has More Than Doubled Down on Deaths due to COVID-19

Here is the thing. You did not need access to top secret intelligence to see what was going on in China as suggested by the Trump administration. By the end of January, both Joe Biden and Elizabeth Warren were calling attention to the lack of preparedness of the Trump administration. Yet, Republicans proceeded to double down and triple down on the type of conduct that they complain about with China:

https://www.warren.senate.gov/oversight/letters/senators-warren-king-question-usaid-on-decision-to-shutter-global-infectious-disease-prevention-program

Senators Warren, King Question USAID on Decision to Shutter Global Infectious Disease Prevention Program
From 2009 to 2019, PREDICT identified nearly 1,000 new viruses, including a new strand of Ebola; trained roughly 5,000 people; and improved or developed 60 research laboratories; Lawmakers' request for more information comes as a novel coronavirus has reached the U.S.


Washington, D.C. -- United States Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), a member of the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Committee, and Senator Angus King (I-Maine) sent a letter to the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) requesting information regarding the agency's recent decision to shutter PREDICT, a program established to identify and combat viruses that may generate global pandemics, including the recent coronavirus. These diseases pose a threat to the public health and safety in the U.S. and abroad.

"Addressing and preventing the spread of coronavirus and potential pandemic disease outbreaks is a serious matter that requires adequate resources for and cooperation between experts throughout the federal government," wrote the lawmakers. "That is why we write today to request information about the U.S. Agency for International Development's (USAID) recent decision to shutter PREDICT, a program established to identify and combat viruses with the capacity to generate global pandemics."

The USAID PREDICT program--launched in 2009 after the 2005 H5N1 bird flu sparked global fears of an epidemic--was designed to help identify and combat emerging pandemic threats like coronavirus. From 2009 to 2019, the PREDICT program identified nearly 1,000 new viruses, including a new strain of Ebola; trained roughly 5,000 people around the world to identify new diseases; and improved or developed 60 research laboratories. Despite its success--and just months before the emergence of 2019-nCoV--USAID announced that it would cease funding the PREDICT program. In response to a November letter from Senator King requesting information on the project's end, USAID indicated that it intends to initiate a successor project -- but just two months away from the March 2020 closure of PREDICT, no additional details regarding this replacement have been released.

"The rise of 2019-nCoV heightens the need for a robust, coordinated, and proactive response to emerging pandemics--one of the roles that PREDICT played," the senators wrote. "We are concerned that, as the 2019-NCoV [']Wuhan coronavirus['] threatens public health in the U.S. and abroad, programs like PREDICT are winding down rather than ramping up."
The senators have requested responses to their questions no later than February 13, 2020.

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