New report details how Trump personally made America’s coronavirus response worse
(AFP / MANDEL NGAN)

Politico on Saturday published a new report titled, "How Trump’s haphazard management style made the coronavirus crisis worse: Current and former administration officials blame the president for creating a no-bad-news atmosphere that stifled attempts to combat the outbreak."


The report details how Donald Trump intervened to prevent Vice President Mike Pence from evacuating passengers on the Grand Princess cruise ship.

"For six weeks behind the scenes, and now increasingly in public, Trump has undermined his administration’s own efforts to fight the coronavirus outbreak — resisting attempts to plan for worst-case scenarios, overturning a public-health plan upon request from political allies and repeating only the warnings that he chose to hear," Politico reported.

"Members of Congress have grilled top officials like Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar and Centers for Disease Control Director Robert Redfield over the government’s biggest mistake: failing to secure enough testing to head off a coronavirus outbreak in the United States. But many current and former Trump administration officials say the true management failure was Trump’s," Politico explained.

Politico interviewed one person "helping advise the administration's response."

“It always ladders to the top,” the source said. “Trump’s created an atmosphere where the judgment of his staff is that he shouldn’t need to know these things.”

"Interviews with 13 current and former officials, as well as individuals close to the White House, painted a picture of a president who rewards those underlings who tell him what he wants to hear while shunning those who deliver bad news," Politico reported. "For instance, aides heaped praise on Trump for his efforts to lock down travel from China — appealing to the president’s comfort zone of border security — but failed to convey the importance of doing simultaneous community testing, which could have uncovered a potential U.S. outbreak. Government officials and independent scientists now fear that the coronavirus has been silently spreading in the United States for weeks, as unexplained cases have popped up in more than 25 states."

"As the outbreak has grown, Trump has become attached to the daily count of coronavirus cases and how the United States compares to other nations, reiterating that he wants the U.S. numbers kept as low as possible. Health officials have found explicit ways to oblige him by highlighting the most optimistic outcomes in briefings, and their agencies have tamped down on promised transparency," Politico reported. "The CDC has stopped detailing how many people in the country have been tested for the virus, and its online dashboard is running well behind the number of U.S. cases tracked by Johns Hopkins and even lags the European Union’s own estimate of U.S. cases."