Since Donald Trump took office, Sen. Ted Cruz has been an outspoken ally. Cruz is currently at home after self-quarantining after being exposed to an individual infected with the coronavirus.
On Friday evening, Cruz spoke to ABC News by phone. He stated during the interview that the Trump administration’s response to the pandemic was “undoubtedly” too slow.
“There are areas in the public health crisis that I think the administration has done well,” Cruz, stated. “There are areas where they have not done as well, and they need to do better.”
“I think the rollout of the test was clearly problematic,” he added. “There were mistakes in terms of efficacy.”
Cruz would then state that test kits should have been delivered “with speed and efficiency” to every state. He added that “bureaucracy was a little bit slow in bringing the private sector into it.”
Cruz would go on to tell ABC News that he was not experiencing any symptoms and was “feeling terrific.”
After Cruz was informed, he had been in contact with an individual who had tested positive for COVD-19 he released a statement and announced he would be working from home.
“On March 3, I met in my D.C. office with Santiago Abascal, the leader of the Vox Party in Spain,” Cruz’s statement said. “We met for about 20 minutes, sitting together at a conference table. We shook hands twice and took pictures together.”
Cruz will remain in self-quarantine until March 17, which is 14 days from his meeting with Abascal.
“So, I am once again sitting in my home,” Cruz told ABC News, “but working from home, and engaging in the government response to this growing public health crisis.”
Cruz added that he has not been tested for the coronavirus because he has not had any symptoms. He stated that he is following his physician’s instructions and if he were to have symptoms then he would move forward with being tested.
Cruz went on to state that he agreed with the World Health Organization about the importance of “social distancing.”
“It’s one of the reasons why I decided myself to self-quarantine,” Cruz said. “The doctors advised me based on the contact I had that the likelihood of contraction of the virus was quite low, but I thought it was the right thing to do to minimize my contact with others so that if I had contracted the virus, I would not be at risk of passing it on to anyone else.”
Sen. Ted Cruz placed himself into voluntary self-quarantine after he interacted briefly with a person who is infected by the novel coronavirus.
— ABC News Live (@ABCNewsLive) March 13, 2020
Despite advice from health experts and organizations, Donald Trump has not practiced self-quarantining or social distancing. He continues to shake hands and attends large events.
“I think we need to do much, much more to make tests available widely and publicly,” Cruz said. “I think we’ve made major steps in the last 48 hours in that regard, in particular, seeing private labs stepping forward to fill some of the capacity, but I’m urging the administration, I’m urging Congress, to make the test widely available so that anyone who is experiencing symptoms can be tested.”
Cruz also went on to urge Trump and his administration to improve protective gear for first responders as well as giving health care facilities the flexibility to expand their inventory especially for items like ventilators.
“If God forbid, we see a dramatic increase in the number of people suffering from this public health outbreak, we need to make sure that we have sufficient medical equipment to care for them,” Cruz said.
Pres. Trump says he has "no symptoms whatsoever" after meeting with Brazilian official who reportedly tested positive for coronavirus, but later says he "most likely" will be tested, "not for that reason, but because I think I will do it anyway." https://t.co/3RRN8CFygS pic.twitter.com/er4LKse9uS
— ABC News (@ABC) March 13, 2020
Cruz wrapped up the interview by emphasizing the need to develop a vaccine for COVD-19.
“I have been filing legislation to speed up the FDA approval process and, in particular, to pass legislation that I call the Results Act, that says that any pharmaceutical device or medical device approved in another major developed country, like Canada, like Europe, that the FDA has 30 days to approve it here if it is directed towards the coronavirus so that we can get the medical tools we need to defeat this epidemic,” Cruz said.