White House Seeks To Discredit Dr. Fauci Instead Of Addressing The Crisis

13 Jul

Trump continues to put his ego over the advice of public health experts. The White House is trying to discredit Dr. Fauci because his advice highlights Trump’s failed response to the coronavirus. Meanwhile, cases continue to surge to new records, the death toll is increasing, and we’re still experiencing supply shortages and testing delays making it harder to contain the virus.

The White House is seeking to discredit Dr. Fauci and pitching opposition research against him for warning about coronavirus risks.

NBC News: “The White House is seeking to discredit Dr. Anthony Fauci, the country’s leading infectious disease expert, as President Donald Trump works to marginalize him and his dire warnings about the shortcomings of the U.S. coronavirus response. … It was a move more characteristic of a political campaign furtively disseminating opposition research about an opponent than of a White House struggling to contain a pandemic that has killed more than 135,000 people, according to an NBC News tally.”

Trump retweeted a post claiming that the CDC and doctors were “lying” about COVID-19 to “[keep] the economy from coming back.”

Health care workers are once again experiencing shortages in essential PPE and states are still experiencing testing delays.

Axios: “Health care workers faced severe shortages of face masks, gowns and other protective equipment at the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic, and they’re afraid it’s happening again now.”

Yahoo News: “Internal document reveals shortfall in coronavirus supplies — including body bags — in U.S. stockpile”

Washington Post: “Long delays in getting test results hobble coronavirus response”

Coronavirus cases continue to skyrocket to new records as the death toll increases and hospitals become overwhelmed.

New York Times: “New infections in the U.S. climb to more than 68,000, a seventh record in 11 days.”

Washington Post: “Coronavirus death toll in U.S. increases as hospitals in hot-spot states are overwhelmed”

Politico: “Florida reports 15,000 new coronavirus cases, smashing national record”

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One Year Ago Trump Told Farmers They Were ‘Over The Hump’ — Now They’re Suffering More Than Ever

12 Jul

In the year since he declared that farmers were “over the hump,” Trump has stranded American farmers as they continue to suffer from his failed China trade policies.

One year ago today, Trump told struggling farmers that they were “over the hump.”

July 12, 2019 — TRUMP: “But now things are pretty good because we are doing $16 billion and that was the most that China ever purchased. And some of the farmers are really doing well. I think they’re really starting — we’re over the hump. We’re doing really well.”

A few days later, Trump predicted that “by this time next year” farmers would “be doing fantastically well.”

July 17, 2019 — TRUMP: “I mean, I could go over point after point. And one of the big points I think, by this time next year, one of the big points is gonna be the farmers. The farmers are gonna be doing fantastically well.”

Despite Trump’s claims, farmers saw bankruptcies reach a near-decade high in 2019 amidst his reckless trade war, and the problem is getting worse.

CNN: “US farm bankruptcies were up 20% in 2019, despite the billions of dollars in aid President Donald Trump has paid to farmers hurt by the trade war with China. That’s the highest level since 2011, following the Great Recession, according to court data analyzed by the American Farm Bureau. There were 595 Chapter 12 family farm bankruptcies, nearly 100 more than in 2018, the trade group said.”

Wall Street Journal: “The U.S. Department of Agriculture on Thursday said it expects farm debt in 2020 to rise to a record $425 billion, up from $415 billion last year. The debt-to-asset ratio for farms remains at its highest point in more than 15 years, the USDA said, and farm bankruptcies jumped 24% last year.”

While he ignored early warnings about the coronavirus so he could reach an agreement with China to protect his political interests, Trump’s “deal” is already proving to be a loser for farmers.

Stateline: “Buffeted by a two-year trade war, followed by a disappointing — at least so far — trade deal and then a worldwide pandemic, there aren’t a lot of farmers, or rural communities, feeling flush right now. Worried farmers and business groups are urging the United States and China to fulfill their obligations under the first stage of the trade agreement, even as the coronavirus scrambles its assumptions. ‘I’m worse off today than I was before the trade war,’ Stafslien said, ‘and I don’t see an end in sight.’”

Wall Street Journal: “As of May, China had purchased $5.4 billion of agricultural goods, with a goal for the year of $33 billion in purchases…Agricultural purchases are 39% of the pace needed to hit the phase one goal.”

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On Sunday Shows, DeVos Can’t Ensure Our Schools Reopen Safely

12 Jul

On the Sunday shows today, Secretary Betsy DeVos made it clear that the Trump administration has no plan to ensure our schools can reopen safely.

Betsy DeVos refused to give a straight answer on whether students, teachers, and parents will not get coronavirus when schools reopen.

BASH: “Yes or no: Can you assure students, teachers, parents that they will not get coronavirus because they’re going back to school?”

DEVOS: “Well, the key is that kids have to get back to school. And we know there are going to be hotspots.”

Betsy DeVos downplayed the risk of children spreading coronavirus and repeatedly dismissed CDC guidance on how to safely reopen schools.

BASH: “I’m asking you about your own federal government’s guidelines, the CDC guidelines. And what the CDC has said is if children meet in groups it could put everyone at risk.” DEVOS: “Well the CDC has also been very clear to say they never recommended schools close down in the first place.”

CNN’s Kaitlan Collins: “Asked twice, Education Secretary Betsy DeVos declines to say yes, schools should follow CDC guidance as they reopen. Instead she says every situation is going to look different and, of education leaders, ‘These are smart people who can figure things out.’”

Betsy DeVos made it clear that this administration has no plan for how to safely reopen our schools.

BASH: “Why do you not have guidance on what a school should do, just weeks before you want those schools to open, and what happens if there’s an outbreak?”

DEVOS: “There’s really good examples that have been utilized in the private sector and elsewhere.”

BASH: “Okay, but I’m not hearing a plan from the Department of Education. Do you have a plan?”

DEVOS: “Schools should do what’s right on the ground at that time for their students.”

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DNC on DeVos’s Disastrous Sunday Show Interviews

12 Jul

In response to Betsy DeVos’s Sunday show interviews, DNC War Room Director Adrienne Watson released the following statement:

“Secretary DeVos made it abundantly clear that this administration has no idea what it’s doing and no clear plan on how to safely reopen our schools. Instead of taking steps to protect our students, teachers, staff, and parents, DeVos dismissed the CDC’s own guidance and downplayed the risk of children spreading coronavirus. This is only the latest example of this administration’s complete incompetence and utter failure to respond to this pandemic. More Americans are put at risk because of DeVos and Trump running our schools and our country.”

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Trump’s Ego-Driven Convention Had Another Terrible Week

10 Jul

Trump’s dangerous, chaotic convention is creating quite a few headaches at the RNC. From a home state governor sabotaging fundraising efforts to slapdash plans for an outdoor convention in dangerously hot weather, it’s no wonder U.S. senators don’t want to attend and Jacksonville residents don’t want it to happen.

Ron DeSantis is actively sabotaging the convention’s fundraising efforts.

New York Times: “Mr. DeSantis, a Republican, has directed his top fund-raiser, Heather Barker, to tell donors not to give to the convention because of a personal dispute between the governor and Susie Wiles, his former campaign manager who is serving as an informal adviser to the convention planners, according to multiple people familiar with his actions.”

New York Times: “The governor’s threat to hold up resources in his own state was seen by Republican officials as a stunning act of political pettiness by Mr. DeSantis, who had campaigned to bring the convention to Florida, aiming to celebrate a president whose backing elevated him to his current position.”

Officials are considering moving the convention outside. In Jacksonville. In late August.

Washington Post: “The Republican convention in Jacksonville, Fla., next month could be moved to an outdoor stadium as cases of the novel coronavirus in the state increase, according to several officials with knowledge of the plans.”

National Weather Service: On August 27, 2019 — one year before Trump’s RNC speech — the temperature in Jacksonville reached 93 degrees, with 1.43 inches of rain.

A growing list of Republican senators — including Mitch McConnell — are signaling they won’t attend.

Axios: “At least five GOP senators have said they will not attend next month’s Republican National Convention in Jacksonville, Florida and more are rethinking their visits.”

MCCONNELL: “I think the convention is a challenging situation and a number of my colleagues have announced that they’re not going to attend. And we’ll have to wait and see how things look in late August to determine whether or not you can safely convene that many people.”

ROBERTS: “I will probably not be.”

The Hill: “Several others have either not made a decision or not publicly committed to attending, including Sens. Cory Gardner (Colo.), Thom Tillis (N.C.) and Martha McSally (Ariz.), who are each in battleground Senate races.”

Jacksonville residents don’t want the convention to happen either and filed a lawsuit to block it.

First Coast News: “A lawsuit filed Wednesday by seven Downtown Jacksonville residents and business owners is seeking to block the Republican National Convention from coming to the city.”

Plaintiff: “We’re being made guinea pigs. It is just startling that Jacksonville is being treated as the one group of chumps willing to take an event no one else wants … whose participants are so unconcerned about this pandemic that they refuse to listen to the previous city’s efforts to try to protect against it. I think it’s starling that we’re being used as the unwilling victims of a political effort to deny the reality of this pandemic.”

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As Biden Announces Jobs Plan, Battleground Democrats “Blasted” Trump’s Failed Economic Record

10 Jul

WSAV: “They blasted President Donald Trump…for what they termed a slow response to the pandemic, which they said has made the economic fallout worse.”

As Vice President Biden announced his ‘Buy American’ proposal this week, battleground Democrats slammed Trump for his ineffective response to the coronavirus that has devastated our economy and cost working families jobs.

See for yourself:

(AZ) Arizona Republic: “Democrats have criticized President Donald Trump’s record with farmers, saying the president has not followed through on his promises to support the agricultural industry […] ‘Farmers and producers are a vital part of the Arizona economy and they have been trampled on by this administration,’ Matt Grodsky, an Arizona Democratic Party spokesman, said in a written statement.”

(AZ) Blog for Arizona: Joe Biden and Arizona Democratic Party Criticize Trumps handling of COVID 19 in the Grand Canyon State. “The Arizona Democratic Party followed Biden’s lead and issued a statement critical of Trump’s management of Coronavirus related supply chains.”

(AZ) Prensa Arizona: Hispanos en el abandono. “‘He visto lamentablemente como la administración Trump y la administración del gobernador Doug Ducey han fallado de manera general al momento de tratar de controlar esta pandemia, pero también veo como la población latina es prácticamente ignorada’ […] En el estado de Arizona Ríos indicó que la población latina se ha visto afectada en el aspecto económico desde el mes de marzo con recortes en sus salarios, perdidas de trabajo y para muchos de ellos laborar desde casa es prácticamente imposible, para ellos es un lujo.”

(AZ) Arizona Dems: “‘Thanks to Trump, Arizona is winning in all the wrong categories. We have more new COVID-19 cases per capita than any country in the world and Trump’s chaotic response is ravaging our state’s economy,’ said Matt Grodsky, Arizona Democratic Party spokesman.”

(ME) ME Dems: “‘Trump’s slow, ineffective pandemic response is directly responsible for catastrophic job losses here in Maine and across the country,’ said Kathleen Marra, Chair of the Maine Democratic Party. ‘A president with empathy and experience would be working around the clock to control the virus and help Americans get back to work. Instead, Trump continues to downplay the virus, making the economic crisis worse than it needs to be.’”

(MI) MI Dems: “‘Donald Trump’s callous disregard for Michigan workers is causing economic chaos and threatening another spike in COVID-19,’ said Michigan Democratic Party spokesman Christian Slater. ‘This president failed in his response to a global pandemic and Michigan’s working families are paying a devastating price as they face unemployment, evictions, and a deadly disease.’”

(NC) Cardinal & Pine: Rep. Alma Adams: Trump Is Taking A ‘No Lives Matter’ Approach To Coronavirus. “Adams, a Charlotte Democrat, was one of several Democratic lawmakers who lashed out at Trump in a call with reporters, questioning his administration’s strategy to containing the deadly virus, which, as of Wednesday, had killed 1,441 in NC and 131,594 in the US.”

(NC) NC Dems: “Unfortunately, Donald Trump hasn’t risen to the challenge, and the human cost is undeniable … The Trump administration’s approach to COVID-19 is ‘No Lives Matter.’ We need a leader who would take this crisis seriously — that wasn’t Donald Trump.”

(NH) Concord Monitor: Martha Fuller Clark: Granite Staters deserve better than Trump’s incompetence: “Trump continues to downplay the virus, ignores his own advisors, and has allowed the pandemic to spiral out of control, claiming the lives of hundreds of Granite Staters, along with thousands throughout the country and leaving tens of thousands in New Hampshire and millions more without work.”

(GA) WSAV-TV: “Thursday morning, several Democratic lawmakers held a phone media conference to talk about the pandemic and its effects in Georgia. They blasted President Donald Trump and Gov. Brian Kemp for what they termed a slow response to the pandemic, which they said has made the economic fallout worse.”

(GA) GA Dems: “When our economy spiraled because of his failed response to this pandemic, Trump promised to provide relief for working families and small businesses, but instead he’s full of nothing but broken promises.Trump always puts himself and his political fortunes first, while putting the health and well-being of the American people last. Working Georgians will continue to suffer the consequences of this administration’s failures, which is why Georgia voters will vote Donald Trump out of office in November.”

(PA) PoliticsPA: “The Pennsylvania Democratic Party said in a statement that Trump’s policies have failed Pennsylvanians, while also criticizing the Trump administration’s response to the coronavirus pandemic. ‘Mike Pence is coming back to Pennsylvania to spin Trump’s failed record, but Pennsylvanians know the truth: Donald Trump has broken his promises to our communities and left us behind,’ said Pennsylvania Democratic Party spokesman Andres Anzola. ‘Trump’s chaotic, erratic COVID-19 response has cost over 6,700 Pennsylvanians their lives and millions more their jobs.’”

(PA) PA Dems: “Trump and Pence’s failed coronavirus response has devastated the Keystone State, with over 95,000 Pennsylvanians testing positive for the virus and 2.8 million Pennsylvanians filing for unemployment since March.”

(TX) Dallas Observer: Majority of Texans Think Coronavirus Response Is Going Badly, Poll Shows. “‘It didn’t have to be this way. It never had to be this way […] Competent leadership that listens to doctors and experts would have led Texas out of the worst of this mess, instead we were put in danger by President Trump and Governor Abbott’s insecurities and ineptitude.’”

(TX) TX Dems: “Our Texas economy is in shambles and consumer confidence has never been lower. This is a direct reflection of the lack of leadership shown by Donald Trump and Greg Abbott, who continue to bury their heads in the sand and pretend like everything is fine. It never had to be this bad. Trump and Abbott have failed Texans.”

(VA) Blue Virginia: Virginia Democrats Call Out Trump’s Failed Pandemic Response, Highlight Impacts of Cratering Economy. “Delegate Lashrecse Aird: ‘In a time when Virginians are in desperate need of clear, decisive, and bold leaders, we are instead saddled with incompetency, self service, and divisiveness from this White House.’”

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DNC Announces New Voter File Model Increasing Texting Efficiency And Outreach

10 Jul

Today the Democratic National Committee released a new voter file model that increases the efficiency of texting outreach to voters on their cell phones — a critical component of Democrats’ organizing programs during the coronavirus pandemic.

The new model predicts the quality of cell phones for text outreach, including the likelihood that a phone number will be a working number, that the number is assigned to the person organizers are expecting to contact, and that the person will respond positively to the text. It builds on the national cell phone purchase the DNC announced in January, which integrated millions of high-quality cell phone numbers into the voter file, with more added every month.

“In light of the ongoing pandemic, Democrats must adapt our tactics for how to engage voters across the nation,” said Nellwyn Thomas, DNC Chief Technology Officer. “This new model, building off of our previous technology efforts, increases the effectiveness of voter outreach by text message, and that increases our chances of winning. As we approach the election, it is more important than ever to make sure that Democrats use the best data and infrastructure to win races from the White House to state legislative seats to school boards.”

Over the past several months, Democrats’ organizing teams have texted millions of voters in battleground states like Florida, Georgia, Pennsylvania, and Maine with a particular emphasis on encouraging voting by mail.

This innovative data science model will be accessible to Democratic organizations and campaigns including Biden For President, state parties, and sister committees like the DCCC & DLCC, ensuring that as campaigns ramp up their voter outreach for voter registration, fundraising, and GOTV efforts, they are using data that could make it as many as four times more likely to result in a successful contact.

Additional information about the DNC’s technology efforts to prepare for the 2020 general election:

  • The DNC maintains a national voter file which includes data about every registered voter in America. This file is integrated with key datasets, like voter history, demographic information, and modeled scores to help optimize outreach.  The DNC is constantly updating and enhancing the voter file, and it is the central dataset used by all Democratic campaigns and committees. This all helps campaigns at every level reach the right voters they need to with the right message at the right time and the right place.

  • This new release follows other innovative releases from the DNC Tech team including: The National Record Linkage algorithm that de-duplicates millions of voter records and improves the efficiency of the voter file, Blueprint – a foundational set of datasets that make Democratic data easier to use, and the Voter Registration and Purge Tracker which helps voter protection teams monitor for voter purges and take action to re-register voters.

  • After 2016, the DNC overhauled its data infrastructure operating system to create a new, state-of-the-art, cloud-based data warehouse. This makes it easy and efficient for campaigns to access and utilize the voter file.

  • The DNC Tech team has tripled in size and brought top talent with technology experience in both the private sector and campaigns. Nellwyn Thomas, CTO, worked at the Clinton campaign and Facebook, and Bob Lord, Chief Security Officer, is a veteran of Twitter and Yahoo.

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Approval of Trump’s Coronavirus Response Hits A New Low

10 Jul

Americans overwhelmingly disapprove of Trump’s coronavirus response and it’s clear why: cases are skyrocketing, we are still experiencing testing and PPE issues, and unemployment claims remain the worst in history all because of Trump’s failed response.

Approval of Trump’s coronavirus response hit a new low and there has been “clear and consistent” shifts in support away from him.

ABC News: “Evaluation of Trump’s oversight of the COVID-19 crisis reached a new low since ABC News/Ipsos began surveying on the coronavirus in March, with 67% disapproving of his efforts.”

ABC News: “In a variety of demographic groups, there are clear and consistent shifts in support away from the president.”

Reuters/Ipsos: “Looking at Trump’s performance on coronavirus, a majority of Americans disapprove of how Trump has handled the crisis so far (57%), and only 37% approve, which is the lowest number since Reuters/Ipsos began tracking in early March of this year.”

It’s no wonder why. New cases spiked to yet another single-day record yesterday because Trump has failed to contain the virus.

Wall Street Journal: “New coronavirus cases in the U.S. rose by more than 63,000, another single-day record, as hospitals in Texas, California and other states strain to accommodate a surge of new patients.”

Trump’s erratic approach to testing left the country unprepared. We’re more than four months into this crisis and states are still experiencing testing issues and supply shortages.

Washington Post: “The Trump administration’s erratic approach to testing for the novel coronavirus has left state leaders and commercial laboratories confused, frustrated and unprepared for the fall, Democrats on the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions found in a report released Thursday.”

CNN: “Redfield said that the country needs ‘more testing and breakthroughs, we need more rapid testing that can get results in real time.’”

ABC News: “13 states now report coronavirus testing issues, in echo of early troubles”

Washington Post: “Health-care workers on the front lines of the coronavirus pandemic are encountering shortages of masks, gowns, face shields and gloves — a frustrating recurrence of a struggle that haunted the first months of the crisis. Nurses say they are reusing N95 masks for days and even weeks at a time. Doctors say they can’t reopen offices because they lack personal protective equipment. State officials say they have scoured U.S. and international suppliers for PPE and struggle to get orders filled. Experts worry the problem could worsen as coronavirus infections climb, straining medical systems.”

We’re still in an unemployment crisis. Unemployment claims are the worst in history because of Trump’s failed response, but he wants to cut off benefits that are keeping families afloat.

CNBC: “Job losses remain ‘enormous’: Coronavirus unemployment claims are worst in history”

NBC News: “To hear President Trump tell it, the coronavirus will soon disappear, jobs are coming back, and Congress needs to let a $600 weekly unemployment benefit expire July 31, which he calls a ‘disincentive to work.’ But even with some jobs lost to the pandemic beginning to return, over 30 million people are still receiving the unemployment assistance and some fear the president’s rosy assessment could leave them destitute if it goes away.”

Trump still won’t listen to experts. Dr. Fauci hasn’t met with Trump in over a month and contradicted Trump’s claim that everything is going great.

Financial Times: “Fauci last saw Trump in person at the White House on June 2 — and says he has not briefed the president for at least two months.”

Washington Post: “In a White House guided by the president’s instincts, rather than by evidence-based policy, the CDC finds itself forced constantly to backtrack or sidelined from pivotal decisions.”

FAUCI: “But as a country, when you compare us to other countries, I don’t think you can say we’re doing great. I mean, we’re just not.”

FAUCI: “I don’t think it’s an exaggeration to say we have a serious ongoing problem, right now, as we speak.”

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FACT SHEET: Trump Failed To ‘Buy American’

10 Jul

Trump promised to make more products in the USA and boost American manufacturing, but he failed. Instead, manufacturing fell into a recession, Trump incentivized offshoring, and his “buy American” agenda made no meaningful difference.

Trump promised to make more products in the USA, but instead American manufacturing fell into a recession.

  • On the campaign, Trump said “I want products to be made in our country and I’m gonna bring companies back,” and as president he said he “believes in two simple rules: Buy American and hire American.”

  • Instead, manufacturing output shrank and the industry was in a recession for all of 2019. Manufacturing represents the smallest share of the economy in 72 years.

Under Trump’s policies, companies are moving jobs and factories overseas while investment in America declines.

  • Despite his promises, companies moved jobs overseas during Trump’s presidency. In Trump’s first year alone, nearly 200,000 jobs moved overseas.

  • Trump’s tax law failed to slow offshoring and even included new incentives for companies to relocate assets like factories overseas.

  • Trump failed to boost investment in our country. Foreign investment grew at a slower annual pace during Trump’s first two years than under President Obama and fell 37.7% last year.

Trump’s “buy American” orders have done little to boost American manufacturing.

  • Trump signed a “Buy American, hire American” executive order in 2017, but it made no real difference and was never clear on what, if anything, it changed.

  • Trump signed an executive order last year encouraging recipients of federal financial assistance to use U.S. materials, but it included no enforcement mechanisms.

  • Trump signed another symbolic executive order last year to increase requirements for a product to be labeled Made in America, but it did nothing to boost the struggling American steel industry.

  • Trump’s Federal Trade Commission failed to crack down on companies determined to have falsely labeled goods as American made.

When it comes to his businesses, Trump doesn’t make things in America.

  • Trump has sold Trump-branded products that were made in at least 12 foreign countries and two of Trump’s most recent construction products used Chinese steel and aluminum. Even after he took office, the Trump Organization began to sell new merchandise made in China and Bangladesh.

  • Ivanka Trump-branded merchandise was manufactured in countries including China, Indonesia, and Vietnam. U.S. imports of her products surged as Ivanka and her father moved into the White House.

  • The factories manufacturing Ivanka Trump-branded merchandise paid workers low wages and forced them to work long hours – at least one violated Chinese overtime limits.

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Trump Failed Americans on Coronavirus by Giving Billions to Inexperienced Contractors

10 Jul

Trump’s administration gave billions of dollars in coronavirus response contracts to inexperienced and fraudulent companies that failed to deliver — and now he is looking to do it all over again.

Trump’s administration is relying on two companies with insufficient track records to supply syringes for hundreds of millions of vital vaccine doses.

Los Angeles Times: “As the Trump administration races to buy hundreds of millions of syringes for what is likely to be an unprecedented COVID-19 immunization campaign, success depends heavily on two small medical supply companies with little track record of fulfilling government orders of that magnitude.”

Trump’s administration delivered far less food than promised through a program meant to help hungry Americans after hiring inexperienced companies.

Reuters: “The U.S. government delivered far less food aid than it had pledged by the end of June, according to food bank managers and data from the agriculture department sent to Reuters, after it hired inexperienced companies to box food during the pandemic.”

Reuters: “Deliveries were slow to start and have amounted to less than promised as some of the companies involved had never worked with food banks or even wholesale food distribution… With vendors falling short on deliveries, food banks have reassigned employees to manage the program and volunteered their own trucks to get the food into the hands of those who need it.”

Trump’s administration awarded hundreds of millions of dollars for vital medical supplies to companies with histories of fraud.

USA Today: “Hundreds of millions of dollars in sole-sourced, non-competitive awards went to vendors that have been accused of defrauding taxpayers through the False Claims Act, which allows whistleblowers to bring fraud lawsuits on behalf of the U.S. government.”

Trump’s administration awarded billions in contracts to inexperienced medical supply companies, some with ties to the White House.

ProPublica: “A Company Run by a White House ‘Volunteer’ With No Experience in Medical Supplies Got $2.4 Million From the Feds for Medical Supplies”

ProPublica: “They are among about 345 first-time federal contractors promised at least $1.8 billion in deals by the Trump administration since March … many of the new contractors have no experience acquiring medical products.”

National Public Radio: “Some of the companies, such as Baul’s, had little or no experience with personal protective equipment. Others had never worked in the medical field at all. Contractors also included a company that imported vodka and a school security consultant.”

Wall Street Journal: “The federal government, scrambling to find N95 masks to protect health-care workers from coronavirus infection, has placed more than $110 million in mask orders at high prices with unproven vendors.”

Those companies are already failing to deliver.

ProPublica: “The Feds Gave a Former White House Official $3 Million to Supply Masks to Navajo Hospitals. Some May Not Work.”

National Public Radio: “Another company that didn’t deliver on time is Medea Inc., a California-based firm whose ventures have included importing vodka. The company has no experience in personal protective equipment, but got a $48.8 million contract that was ‘not competed’ from FEMA in May to supply KN95 respirator masks. The deadline for Medea to deliver the personal protective equipment was June 1, but the company missed that date.”

Washington Post: “A little-known Virginia-based defense company that was awarded a $55 million federal contract to provide 10 million N95 masks for the U.S. government’s coronavirus response failed to deliver and had its contract canceled Tuesday, according to the Federal Emergency Management Agency. Panthera Worldwide LLC, whose parent company filed for bankruptcy protection last year, had promised to deliver the much-needed personal protective equipment by May 1, despite having no history of providing such materials to the government.”

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