Vice President Mike Pence on Sunday defended President Donald Trump for inciting protests in the middle of a pandemic.
During an interview on Fox New Sunday, host Chris Wallace noted that demonstrators calling for the economy to reopen were seen violating social distancing guidelines.
Pence, however, praised the president instead of answering the question.
“We continue to see encouraging results, declining cases, declining hospitalizations because of what the American people have done, because of the president’s leadership,” the vice president said. “We are slowing the spread, we are hastening the day when we can put the coronavirus in the past and reopen the American economy.”
Pence continued for over a minute before Wallace interrupted.
“But Mr. Vice President,” Wallace said. “In a number of these cases, these protesters — who are not social distancing — are saying they don’t want to wait. In many cases, they’re protesting your own guidelines to stop the spread.”
The Fox News host pointed out that Gov. Jay Inslee (D-WA) had accused Trump of “fomenting domestic rebellion” after the president tweeted that states should “liberate” workers.
“Liberate Minnesota, liberate Michigan and liberate Virginia,” Wallace said, quoting the president’s tweets. “So what does the president mean because you’ve got guidelines that are calling for social distancing and staying at home?”
“Even your guidelines to reopen the country are very phased and gradual,” the Fox News host added. “What does the president mean when he says liberate these states?”
“The American people know that no one in this country wants to reopen this country more than President Donald Trump,” Pence insisted. “And on Thursday that president asked us to lay out guidelines for how the states can responsibly do that.”
“And in the president’s tweets and public statements, I can assure you he’s going to continue to encourage governors to find ways to safely and responsibly let America go back to work,” the vice president concluded.
Watch the video below from Fox News.
Major hospital chains reap billions in federal bailout money while sitting on piles of cash: report
According to a report from the New York Times, a substantial amount of federal funds that were designated to support hospitals overwhelmed by the coronavirus pandemic ended up being shipped off to major hospital chains already flush with cash in the bank.
The report begins by noting that Providence Health System, one of the country’s largest and richest hospital chains, was the recipient of $509 million in government aide even though the company is loaded with so much money it invests its excess cash and reaps big rewards.
WATCH: Staten Island grocery shoppers drive out woman who refuses to wear a mask in the store
A group of angry shoppers at a Staten Island ShopRite were captured on video driving out a woman in the store who refused to wear a face mask.
The 20-second video clip shows masked shoppers swarming around a shopper who is pushing her cart around without any kind of face covering.
"Get out!" one of the shoppers yells at the woman.
"Get the f*ck out of here!" yells another.
While the woman is initially defiant, she eventually relents to peer pressure and leaves the store.
Staten Island has been hard hit by COVID-19 and has recorded more than 13,000 coronavirus infections and nearly 1,000 deaths from the disease.
Big Pharma ignored EU’s plea in 2017 to fast-track virus vaccines prior to pandemics: report
According to a report from The Guardian, major pharmaceutical companies threw up roadblocks to a plan by the European Union to push forward with a major vaccine research effort well before pandemics hit.
The report notes that back in 2017, the EU's executive branch pushed a proposal to put the development of vaccines on the fast-track only to have major drugmakers reject the suggestion.
"The commission’s argument had been that the research could 'facilitate the development and regulatory approval of vaccines against priority pathogens, to the extent possible before an actual outbreak occurs'. The pharmaceutical companies on the Innovative Medicines Initiative (IMI), however, did not take up the idea," the report states.