NEW VIDEO: Trump Golfs as Economy Crumbles and Americans Suffer From His Failed Coronavirus Response

5 Aug

It’s been more than six months since the first coronavirus cases were reported in the U.S., and because Trump has failed to get the virus under control, the economy is crumbling. As a result, 30 million Americans are unemployed, over 100,000 small businesses have permanently shuttered, millions of families are facing evictions, and as of last week, tens of millions have lost half of their income after Trump let enhanced unemployment benefits expire.

The DNC War Room’s latest video, “Golf Course,” slams Trump for standing on the green instead of getting to work to help solve this unprecedented economic and public health crisis. Rather than presenting a national testing strategy, listening to experts, and outlining a plan to reopen schools safely, Trump has spent his time golfing.


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Trump’s Attacks on The Census and USPS Undermine Our Democracy

5 Aug

As the American people deal with the devastating consequences of his failed coronavirus response, Trump has been busy working to sabotage the census and undermine mail-in voting — all in a shameless effort to ensure he and his party benefit politically.

The Trump administration has announced it will stop all census counting a month earlier than previously planned, threatening to undercount marginalized communities.

NPR: “These last-minute changes to the constitutionally mandated count of every person living in the U.S. threaten the accuracy of population numbers used to determine the distribution of political representation and federal funding for the next decade. With roughly 4 out of 10 households nationwide yet to be counted, and already delayed by the coronavirus pandemic, the bureau now has less than two months left to try to reach people of color, immigrants, renters, rural residents and other members of historically undercounted groups who are not likely to fill out a census form on their own.”

And after Trump’s efforts to add a citizenship question to the census were rebuffed by the Supreme Court, he pressured the Census Bureau to provide data that would benefit the Republican Party politically. 

Politico: “Dillingham also said the bureau ‘continues its work on meeting the requirements’ of two Trump orders: a July 2019 executive order that asked administrative agencies to collect data on undocumented immigrants in order to provide counts that states could use to draw state legislative maps that did not include those people; and a presidential memorandum from last month instructing the Census Bureau to calculate apportionment counts — the number of congressional seats each state will have in the next decade — without undocumented immigrants included.  ‘A team of experts are examining methodologies and options to be employed for this purpose,’ Dillingham said.”

Politico: “Excluding these immigrants would likely benefit Republicans in future elections for Congress and the presidency. According to the University of Virginia Center for Politics, a count that did not include undocumented immigrants would mean California would lose two House seats, not the one seat the state is projected to lose in the next decade. Fast-growing Texas, increasingly a competitive state, would gain two seats instead of three. New Jersey would lose a seat.  Alabama and Ohio, meanwhile, would each gain a seat under a count that excluded undocumented immigrants — though they are not currently projected to gain seats under a conventional count.”

Meanwhile, Trump fundraiser-turned-Postmaster General Louis DeJoy’s mismanagement of USPS has caused massive slowdowns, which could disrupt an election in which a record number of voters are expected to vote by mail.

Washington Post: “DeJoy, a North Carolina logistics executive who donated more than $2 million to GOP political committees in the past four years, approved changes that took effect July 13 that the agency said were aimed at cutting costs for the debt-laden mail service. They included prohibiting overtime pay, shutting down sorting machines early and requiring letter carriers to leave mail behind when necessary to avoid extra trips or late delivery on routes.”

Washington Post: “The U.S. Postal Service is experiencing days-long backlogs of mail across the country after a top Trump donor running the agency put in place new procedures described as cost-cutting efforts, alarming postal workers who warn that the policies could undermine their ability to deliver ballots on time for the November election.”

Washington Post: “As President Trump ramps up his unfounded attacks on mail balloting as being susceptible to widespread fraud, postal employees and union officials say the changes implemented by Trump fundraiser-turned-postmaster general Louis DeJoy are contributing to a growing perception that mail delays are the result of a political effort to undermine absentee voting.”

After the slowdowns were implemented, Trump worked to further undermine confidence in the USPS’s ability to handle election mail. 

CNN: “Later Monday, Trump again slammed mail-in ballots during a press briefing, saying, ‘How are you going to do that for an entire nation? They’re using Covid to try and get the mail-in ballots. ‘The Post Office for many, many years has been, you know, run in a fashion that hasn’t been great—great workers and everything, but they have old equipment, very old equipment,’ Trump added. ‘And I don’t think the Post Office is prepared for a thing like this. You have to ask the people at the Post Office, but how can the Post Office be expected to handle?’”

New York Times: “In tweet after all-caps tweet, Mr. Trump has warned that allowing people to vote by mail will result in a ‘CORRUPT ELECTION’ that will ‘LEAD TO THE END OF OUR GREAT REPUBLICAN PARTY’ and become the ‘SCANDAL OF OUR TIMES.’ He has predicted that children will steal ballots out of mailboxes.”

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Trump Administration Confirms China Isn’t Living Up To Trump’s Trade Deal

5 Aug

Once again, data from Trump’s own administration confirms that the China trade deal he staked his reelection on has been a failure. After losing the trade war he started, Trump settled for a bad deal, and was so eager to secure it that he let China off the hook on the coronavirus, which has cost over 155,000 American lives and wreaked havoc on our economy. Now, China isn’t even living up to its purchase agreements. Trump promised to get tough on China, but he got played instead.

New data from Trump’s Commerce Department confirmed that through the first half of the year China was still $120 billion short of its trade deal commitments for 2020 and even behind pre-trade war levels.

January 2020-June 2020: The U.S. exported $49.5 billion in goods to China.

Bloomberg: “By the end of the first half of this year, China had bought about 23% of the total purchase target of more than $170 billion for goods in 2020, according to Bloomberg calculations based on Chinese Customs Administration data.”

January 2017-June 2017: The U.S. exported $58.9 billion in goods to China.

Despite data to the contrary, the Trump administration continues to take China at its word that they’re living up to the trade deal.

LIGHTHIZER: “Every contact I’ve had with the Chinese, they have reaffirmed their commitment to living up to the agreement.”

MNUCHIN: “I have every expectation that they will. They have continued to tell us they will, as recently as last week when Secretary Pompeo met with one of the senior people who flew in from China and they had a summit. So I have that expectation that they will live up to their obligation.”

TRUMP: “They’ve been living up to the deal. They’re buying a lot of — a lot of things. They never had any deal. They just came in and took advantage of the United States. Took out hundreds of billions of dollars a year. So they don’t do that anymore.”

TRUMP: “They’re buying. You know, I made a trade deal, and it’s a wonderful deal… The deal with China was a great deal.”

Trump has even repeatedly claimed China would buy far more than the $200 billion target.

TRUMP: “But we have an additional $200 [billion]. They are going to be what — what is, to me, very important. Number one, they’re going to be spending much more than $200 billion over the next two years, including up to $50 billion just on agriculture alone.” [Trump Remarks At Signing Of The U.S.-China Phase One Trade Agreement, Washington DC, 1/15/20]

TRUMP: “It’s far greater than $200 billion, and it’ll grow every year.” [Trump Remarks In Luncheon With Vice Premier Liu He Of The People’s Republic Of China, Washington DC, 1/15/20]

TRUMP: “But– the deal is a phenomenal deal. We will take in $250 billion– they’re going to be buying $250 billion, and it could go a lot higher than that.” [Squawk Box, CNBC, 1/22/20]

TRUMP: “So we’ll be taking in an excess of $200 billion; could be closer to $300 billion when it finishes.” [Trump Remarks At The World Economic Forum, Davos CH, 1/21/20]

TRUMP: “I did a trade deal with China, where China is supposed to be spending $250 billion in our country.”

TRUMP: “So I just made a deal with China where they’re going to put in $250 billion of product.  They’re going to be — they’re going to be buying $250- — 50; from 40 to 50 — billion in farm.”

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WATCH: Trump Says Coronavirus ‘Will Go Away’ And Children Are ‘Almost Immune’

5 Aug

On Fox and Friends this morning, Trump said schools should fully reopen, even though he doesn’t have a plan to ensure it is done safely, because the coronavirus “will go away like things go away” and children are “almost immune to this disease.” That’s false:

Trump said schools should reopen because coronavirus “will go away like things go away” and children are “almost immune from this disease.”

TRUMP: “This thing’s going away. It will go away like things go away.”

TRUMP: “Children are almost, and I would almost say definitely, but almost immune from this disease.”

But the coronavirus does pose risks for children and their families, and the more we learn, the clearer it becomes how risky fully reopening schools would be.

Axios: “There’s not much good news about kids and coronavirus”

Axios: “The more we learn about kids and the coronavirus, the riskier reopening schools for in-person learning appears to be, at least in areas with high caseloads.”

Numerous studies have shown that children are susceptible to infection and can spread the coronavirus at least as well as adults do. 

New York Times: “A large new study from South Korea offers an answer: Children younger than 10 transmit to others much less often than adults do, but the risk is not zero. And those between the ages of 10 and 19 can spread the virus at least as well as adults do.”

Washington Post: “A new report suggests that children of all ages are susceptible to coronavirus infection and may also spread it to others — a finding likely to intensify an already fraught discussion about the risks of sending children back to school this fall. The analysis, released Friday by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, details an outbreak at a sleep-away camp in Georgia last month in which 260 children and staffers — more than three-quarters of the 344 tested — contracted the virus less than a week after spending time together in close quarters.”

The American people know the risk of fully reopening schools without a plan. New polling shows that opposition to reopening schools at the end of summer is rising.

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Trump Calls Testing ‘An Amazing Achievement,’ Despite Still Having No Testing Strategy

5 Aug

Trump claims that testing has been “an amazing achievement” and his administration says there is nothing more they can do, even as testing problems persist and Trump still has no national testing strategy to help contain the coronavirus.

Last night, Trump said that testing has been “an amazing achievement.”

TRUMP: “It’s been an amazing achievement, the testing.”

Trump still has no national testing strategy and persistent testing delays have hindered the pandemic response.

Washington Post: “There’s no national testing strategy for coronavirus. These states banded together to make one.”

New York Times: “‘It’s Like Having No Testing’: Coronavirus Test Results Are Still Delayed”

Trump announced a plan to provide every nursing home with a fast COVID-19 testing machine. But he won’t supply enough test kits.

Associated Press: “The Trump administration’s plan to provide every nursing home with a fast COVID-19 testing machine comes with an asterisk: The government won’t supply enough test kits to check staff and residents beyond an initial couple of rounds. A program that sounded like a game changer when it was announced last month at the White House is now prompting concerns that it could turn into another unfulfilled promise for nursing homes, whose residents and staff represent a tiny share of the U.S. population but account for as many as 4 in 10 coronavirus deaths, according to some estimates.”

Despite the Trump administration’s claims, experts overwhelmingly say the administration can do more to fix the country’s testing problems.

CNN: “CNN asked more than 20 public health and lab industry sources whether Giroir and the administration were doing all they could to fix the country’s testing problems and there was an overwhelming consensus: No.”

Most Americans agree and want the Trump administration to do more to slow the spread of the coronavirus, including expanding testing.

NPR: “Two-thirds of respondents said they believe the U.S. is handling the pandemic worse than other countries, and most want the federal government to take extensive action to slow the spread of the coronavirus, favoring a top-down approach to reopening schools and businesses.”

NPR: “Other measures that enjoy broad backing include government funding to expand testing for the coronavirus and make it free of charge.”

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DNC launches digital ad campaign highlighting Trump’s failed COVID-19 response in The Tampa Bay Times

5 Aug

Chris King, Florida Faith Leaders to hold press call

Ahead of Vice President Pence’s trip to Clearwater today, the Democratic National Committee is launching a digital ad campaign in The Tampa Bay Times, highlighting Trump’s failed coronavirus response. The Tampa Bay Times reaches voters in Clearwater, where Pence is set to visit today for a “Faith in America” Tour event.

Additionally, today at 11:30 AM EDT, the Florida Democratic Party will host a press call featuring Reverend Dr. Joe Parramore, president and founding pastor of New Journey Ministries; Reverend Gina Durbin of King of Peace in St. Petersburg; Reverend Dr. James Golden of Mt. Zion AME Church, Port of Tampa; Chris King, CEO of Elevation Financial Group and 2018 Democratic nominee for lieutenant governor of Florida to discuss how Trump’s failed, ineffective coronavirus response has hurt Floridians and resulted in nearly 500,000 cases and more than 7,000 deaths statewide. The speakers will also highlight how the Trump administration is failing on issues critical to Floridians of faith, from his mission to undermine the Affordable Care Act during a pandemic to his cruel immigration agenda, to his absolute failure to lead during his pandemic, which has disproportionately hurt Black and Brown communities.

“Nothing Pence says today can change Trump’s total incompetence in responding to the coronavirus — it didn’t need to be this bad, it’s getting worse, and his failure in handling this crisis effectively has cost Floridians their jobs and lives,” said DNC Chair Tom Perez. “Instead of this photo-op, Pence should be listening to the voices of Floridians who are still suffering as COVID spikes, or the Floridians of faith who are repulsed by Trump’s efforts to strip away health care coverage from millions in the midst of a pandemic. In November, Floridians of every faith and political persuasion will hold this administration accountable by voting Trump and Pence out of office.”

These display ads will reach voters throughout The Tampa Bay Times’ website and will run for 24 hours.  Images of the ads are below:

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Navarro’s Shady Defense Production Act Deals

4 Aug

Trump tapped Peter Navarro — a discredited economist with no experience managing supply chains — to play a major role in coordinating his inadequate use of the Defense Production Act. Under Trump’s directive, Navarro has organized a number of shady and downright incompetent deals in the middle of a crisis made worse by the lack of supplies.

Peter Navarro has been involved in several questionable deals so far in his role coordinating Trump’s limited use of the Defense Production Act.

NBC News: “A number of the actions the Trump administration has pointed to as its coronavirus successes are deals Navarro played a role in, such as acquiring ventilators, masks or swabs. Some of those contracts have come under scrutiny, however, whether it be for potentially overpaying for supplies or doing deals with companies that have connections to the administration.”

Navarro’s office led efforts to award a $765 million loan for pharmaceutical manufacturing to Kodak, which does not make pharmaceuticals. 

Bloomberg: “Some financial analysts and economic development experts greeted the proposal with skepticism. Kodak filed for bankruptcy in 2012 after getting lapped by rivals in digital photography and failing to make good on an earlier multibillion-dollar acquisition of a pharmaceutical company.”

SVB Leerink: “We are puzzled by the Trump Administration’s decision. In particular, we find it puzzling why generic pharmaceutical companies who have the capabilities and know-how for this have not yet been awarded such contracts.”

The Kodak deal resulted in a $50 million payday for its CEO, and it’s currently under investigation by the SEC.

New York Times: “At the beginning of this week, the Eastman Kodak Company handed its chief executive 1.75 million stock options. … The day after the stock options were granted, the White House announced that the company would receive a $765 million federal loan to produce ingredients to make pharmaceuticals in the United States. … Within 48 hours of the options grants, their value had ballooned, at least on paper, to about $50 million.”

Wall Street Journal: “The Securities and Exchange Commission is investigating the circumstances around Eastman Kodak Co.’s announcement of a $765 million government loan to make drugs at its U.S. factories, according to people familiar with the matter.”

Navarro and Jared Kushner’s former roommate made a deal to pay five times more for ventilators than the Obama administration had paid.

NBC News: “White House trade adviser Peter Navarro … negotiated the new contract at almost five times the price the Obama administration paid. The devices Navarro purchased were ‘functionally identical’ to the previous ones.”

NBC News: “The deal was formalized by Adam Boehler, CEO of the U.S. International Development Finance Corporation, who is a former college roommate of Jared Kushner, Trump’s senior adviser and son-in-law. Christopher Abbott, an aide to Navarro who graduated from college just last year, oversaw a majority of the communications between Philips and the White House.”

USA Today: “According to the report’s review of documents, ‘the Administration accepted Philips’ first offer without even trying to negotiate a lower price.’ White House trade adviser Peter Navarro … offered to prepay half of the total cost, or more than $323 million, to Philips before a single ventilator was even delivered. Department of Health and Human Services staff later reduced the amount prepaid to 10% of the total cost of the contract.”

Navarro stockpiled more than 60 million doses of hydroxychloroquine, which the FDA has warned against using to treat coronavirus, and is trying to manufacture even more while Trump continues to push the unproven treatment.

Bloomberg: “U.S. Sits on Millions of Pills That Treat Lupus, Not Covid”

Bloomberg: “Federal trade adviser Peter Navarro criticized the results of large clinical trials debunking hydroxychloroquine’s effectiveness for Covid-19 … He said he would continue to stockpile millions of doses of the drug that’s been aggressively promoted by President Donald Trump.”

Bloomberg: “One of the drugs Kodak would manufacture materials for is hydroxychloroquine, the controversial antimalarial drug touted by President Donald Trump in the treatment of the coronavirus.”

In May, Navarro granted a $350 million contract to a new company with no track record in drug manufacturing.

Politico: “The Trump administration’s effort to rapidly launch a U.S. manufacturer for drugs to treat coronavirus patients hinges on a new company whose chief executive is best known for a failed anti-allergy injector and for raising the prices of a powerful opioid antidote. … The new company has no track record in drug manufacturing, and it’s not clear when its assembly lines will begin churning out products.”

Wall Street Journal: “In late March, the company hired two lobbying firms with experience representing pharmaceutical and biomedical firms, according to lobbying records, paying them $30,000 in the first quarter.  The company’s pitch to the administration, a person familiar with the matter said, focused on an America-centric message that appealed to officials like Mr. Navarro.”

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As Reports of Infected Schoolchildren Rise, Trump Again Pushes for Schools to Reopen Without Ensuring It’s Safe

4 Aug

In a late-night, all-caps tweet yesterday, Trump again pushed for schools to reopen.

Everyone wants kids to be able to go back to classrooms, but Trump has failed to control the virus and still can’t ensure fully reopening schools will be safe. As students and staff in reopened schools across the country are testing positive for coronavirus, Trump is putting the lives of other children, school staff, and their families at risk. 

Georgia — Washington Post: “On Wednesday, teachers in Georgia’s largest school district returned to elementary, middle and high school campuses to start in-person planning for the fall semester. By the next day, 260 district employees had been barred from entering their schools, either because they tested positive for the coronavirus or had been directly exposed to someone who had.”

Indiana — Washington Post: “On Thursday, the first day back for students at a middle school in Greenfield, Ind., a student who came to classes tested positive.”

Mississippi — Washington Post: “Within the first week of reopening, a school district in Mississippi reported its first positive case and identified 14 other students who came in contact with the sick pupil. By Monday, two more students had tested positive, the district said on Facebook.”

Kansas — Washington Post: “After attending a three-day retreat to plan the upcoming school year, 11 school leaders who serve campuses in Chanute, Kan., tested positive for the virus by Monday.”

And Betsy DeVos keeps spreading dangerous misinformation about kids’ potential to contract and spread the virus, contradicting a growing body of research.

DEVOS: “All of the data suggests that kids don’t contract the virus at the same rates as adults, and that they don’t pass it on in the same way.”

New York Times: “A large new study from South Korea offers an answer: Children younger than 10 transmit to others much less often than adults do, but the risk is not zero. And those between the ages of 10 and 19 can spread the virus at least as well as adults do. The findings suggest that as schools reopen, communities will see clusters of infection take root that include children of all ages, several experts cautioned.”

New York Times: “Infected children have at least as much of the coronavirus in their noses and throats as infected adults, according to the research. Indeed, children younger than age 5 may host up to 100 times as much of the virus in the upper respiratory tract as adults, the authors found.”

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FACT SHEET: Trump Has Failed Latinos

4 Aug

Trump promised Latinos he would give them more opportunities and chances to succeed, but time and time again, Trump has broken his promises to the community. Trump has made it more difficult for Latinos to get ahead. And now, his failed coronavirus response is disproportionately harming Latinos.

Trump failed to address racial disparities present in the coronavirus pandemic and botched the rollout of aid to Latino small business owners.

  • As Trump failed to mount a serious response to the coronavirus, unemployment has been particularly high for Black and Latino workers and business owners. As of June, Latino unemployment was 14.5%.

  • Black- and Latinx-owned businesses suffered as the Trump administration botched the delivery of assistance to small businesses hurt by the coronavirus.

Trump has repeatedly stoked racial and cultural divisions to demonize Latinos.

  • As president, Trump said undocumented immigrants were “invading” and “infesting” our country. He said our immigration policy should be “you can’t come in.”

  • Trump declared a national emergency and illegally diverted money from military construction projects to pay for his border wall. He repeatedly threatened to shut down the government and veto funding for essential programs if taxpayers didn’t fund his border wall.

Trump’s immigration policies have cruelly torn Latino families apart.

  • Trump illegally rescinded the DACA program and sabotaged every bipartisan immigration deal that would have protected American Dreamers.

  • After the Supreme Court blocked Trump’s attempt to end the Obama-era DACA program, the Trump administration announced it will not accept new applications.

  • The Trump administration separated more than 1,100 migrant families at the border, with no system to bring them back together.

Instead of bringing wage growth and job creation to Latino communities, Trump has made it harder for Latinos to succeed.

  • Job creation for Hispanic Americans has slowed under Trump.

  • Latinos were disproportionately left out on the benefits from Trump’s tax law, and many will actually face higher taxes by 2027.

  • Trump’s budgets sought to slash funding for SNAP benefits, which help about 10 million Latinos and lifted nearly 2.5 million Latinos out of poverty in 2015 alone.

  • Trump’s decision to rescind DACA and eliminate protections for TPS recipients could devastate Latino communities and the entire U.S. economy.

  • Trump has repeatedly denied climate science, even as climate change is expected to have a disproportionate negative impact on Latino communities.

Trump’s attacks on health care have disproportionately affected Latino communities. 

  • Trump’s health care sabotage jeopardizes significant gains among Hispanic communities.

  • Trump proposed massive cuts to Medicaid, which provides health coverage for about 32% of non-elderly Hispanics.

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Trump on Coronavirus Deaths: ‘It Is What It Is’

4 Aug

Trump continues to downplay the coronavirus and still has no plan to control its spread, even as cases surge and our nation’s top public health experts warn that the pandemic has entered a “new phase.”

Trump said that more than 1,000 Americans dying a day “is what it is” and falsely claimed that the pandemic is “under control.”

TRUMP: “They are dying. That’s true. It is what it is.”

TRUMP: “It’s under control as much as you can control it.”

Trump incoherently said “read the manuals, read the books” after claiming that people say you can test too much.

TRUMP: “There are those that say you can test too much, you do know that.”

SWAN: “Who says that?”

TRUMP: “Oh, just read the manuals. Read the books.”

Earlier in the day, Trump and Pence both tried to spin their failures and downplay the virus by claiming we were making progress.

Associated Press’s Michael Tackett: “Trump said there are ‘very encouraging’ signs that the ‘virus is receding’”

CNN: “Forever spinning their failure in handling the crisis, Trump and Vice President Mike Pence on Monday made selective claims of ‘significant’ advances and ‘very encouraging’ signs and celebrated ‘plateauing’ cases in sunbelt areas that might have escaped their disasters by ignoring the President’s advice.”

Meanwhile, Trump still has no plan to contain the virus and Dr. Fauci reiterated Dr. Birx’s warning that the pandemic is in a “new phase.”

CNN: “No signs Trump has a plan as experts say the pandemic enters new phase”

Washington Post: “Anthony S. Fauci, the nation’s top infectious disease expert, defended and amplified Deborah Birx’s statements about what she characterized as a ‘new phase’ of the pandemic in the United States. Speaking to reporters Monday, Fauci said that the kind of spread some states are experiencing is extremely difficult to contain. ‘When you have community spread it’s insidious, there are people who are spreading it who have no symptoms at all … It’s difficult to do identification, isolation and contact tracing,’ Fauci said.”

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