Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) had to eat a hearty slice of humble pie on Thursday. This coming after the Republican king maker from Kentucky spoke out about his political rival ex-President Barack Obama.
Senator McConnell expressed to Trump’s daughter in law Lara on a virtual campaign appearance: “They claim pandemics only happen once every hundred years but what if that’s no longer true? We want to be early, ready for the next one, because clearly the Obama administration did not leave to this administration any kind of game plan for something like this.”
Yesterday Sen. McConnell was pressed on Fox News “Special Report” about his comments. “I was wrong,” he stated. “They did leave behind a plan. So I clearly made a mistake in that regard. As to whether or not the plan was followed and who is the critic and all the rest, I don’t have any observation about that because I don’t know enough about the details of that, Bret, to comment on it in any detail.”
President Barack Obama’s White House National Security Council left the Trump administration a detailed document on responding to a pandemic. That revealed by Politico in March, that called the Playbook for Early Response to High-Consequence Emerging Infectious Disease Threats and Biological Incidents.This contains step-by-step advice on questions to ask, decisions to make and which federal agencies are responsible for what. It includes sample documents that officials could use for inter-agency meetings. And it explicitly names novel coronavirus as one pathogen that could require a major response.Additionally, outgoing senior Obama officials also led an in-person pandemic response exercise for senior incoming Trump officials in January 2017 — as required by a new law on improving presidential transitions that Obama signed in 2016.
As Ebola coordinator for the Obama administration Ronald Klain told, “we literally left them a 69-page Pandemic Playbook…. that they ignored.” He claimed, “And an office called the Pandemic Preparedness Office… that they abolished. And a global monitoring system called PREDICT .. that they cut by 75%” Surely McConnell’s critics won’t let him forget.