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Here are the specific actions the Trump Administration took starting in early January
Sep 10, 2020 6:44 AM
By Tom Elliott — Grabien News

This week Bob Woodward released excerpts from a forthcoming book on the the Trump Administration’s handling of Coronavirus. The angle grabbing the most media attention is President Trump telling the author that his public comments were less dire than the intelligence he was being provided from the federal government. Many are now claiming this amounts to a “cover up” that needlessly endangered the lives of Americans.

However, as the timeline below demonstrates, Woodward’s report does not accurately capture the Trump Administration’s public handling of the virus. In fact, the administration was initially attacked for being too aggressive.

With assistance from the White House, below is a timeline of Trump’s handling of Covid from early January through March.

January 6: The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) issued a travel notice for Wuhan, China due to the spreading coronavirus

January 7: The CDC established a coronavirus incident management system to better share and respond to information about the virus

January 11: The CDC issued a Level I travel health notice for Wuhan, China

January 17: The CDC began implementing public health entry screening at the 3 U.S. airports that received the most travelers from Wuhan – San Francisco, New York JFK, and Los Angeles

January 20: Dr Fauci announces the National Institutes of Health is already working on the development of a vaccine for the coronavirus

January 21: The CDC activated its emergency operations center to provide ongoing support to the coronavirus response

January 23: The CDC sought a “special emergency authorization” from the FDA to allow states to use its newly developed coronavirus test

January 27: The CDC issued a level III travel health notice urging Americans to avoid all nonessential travel to China due to the coronavirus

January 29: The White House announced the formation of the Coronavirus Task Force to help monitor and contain the spread of the virus and provide updates to the President

January 31: The Trump Administration: Declared the coronavirus a public health emergency; announced Chinese travel restrictions; suspended entry into the United States for foreign nationals who pose a risk of transmitting the coronavirus.

January 31: The Department of Homeland Security took critical steps to funnel all flights from China into just 7 domestic U.S. airports

February 3: The CDC had a team ready to travel to China to obtain critical information on the novel coronavirus, but were in the U.S. awaiting permission to enter by the Chinese government

February 4: President Trump vowed in his State of the Union Address to “take all necessary steps” to protect Americans from the coronavirus

February 6: The CDC began shipping CDC-Developed test kits for the 2019 Novel Coronavirus to U.S. and international labs

February 9: The White House Coronavirus Task Force briefed governors from across the nation at the National Governors’ Association Meeting in Washington

February 11: The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) expanded a partnership with Janssen Research & Development to “expedite the development” of a coronavirus vaccine

February 12: The U.S. shipped test kits for the 2019 novel coronavirus to approximately 30 countries who lacked the necessary reagents and other materials The CDC was prepared to travel to China but had yet to receive permission from the Chinese government

February 14: The CDC began working with five labs to conduct “community-based influenza surveillance” to study and detect the spread of coronavirus

February 18: HHS announced it would engage with Sanofi Pasteur in an effort to quickly develop a coronavirus vaccine and to develop treatment for coronavirus infections

February 24: The Trump Administration sent a letter to Congress requesting at least $2.5 billion to help combat the spread of the coronavirus

February 26: President Trump discussed coronavirus containment efforts with Indian PM Modi and updated the press on his Administration’s containment efforts in the U.S. during his state visit to India

February 29: The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) allowed certified labs to develop and begin testing coronavirus testing kits while reviewing pending applications

February 29: The Trump Administration: Announced a level 4 travel advisory to areas of Italy and South Korea; barred all travel to Iran; barred the entry of foreign citizens who visited Iran in the last 14 days

March 3: The CDC lifted federal restrictions on coronavirus testing to allow any American to be tested for coronavirus, “subject to doctor’s orders.” The White House announced President Trump donated his fourth quarter salary to fight the coronavirus.

March 4: The Trump Administration announced the purchase of $500 million N95 respirators over the next 18 months to respond to the outbreak of the novel coronavirus

March 4: Secretary Azar announced that HHS was transferring $35 million to the CDC to help state and local communities that have been impacted most by the coronavirus

March 6: President Trump signed an $8.3 billion bill to fight the coronavirus outbreak. The bill provides $7.76 billion to federal, state, & local agencies to combat the coronavirus and authorizes an additional $500 million in waivers for Medicare telehealth restrictions

March 9: President Trump called on Congress to pass a payroll tax cut over coronavirus

March 10: President Trump and VP Pence met with top health insurance companies and secured a commitment to waive co-pays for coronavirus testing.

March 11: President Trump: Announced travel restrictions on foreigners who had visited Europe in the last 14 days; directed the Small Business Administration to issue low-interest loans to affected small businesses and called on congress to increase this fund by $50 billion; directed the Treasury Department to defer tax payments for affected individuals & businesses, & provide $200 billion in “additional liquidity”; met with American bankers at the White House to discuss coronavirus

March 13: President Trump declared a national emergency in order to access $42 billion in exiting funds to combat the coronavirus

March 13: President Trump announced: Public-private partnerships to open up drive-through testing collection sites; a pause on interest payments on federal student loans; an order to the Department of Energy to purchase oil for the strategic petroleum reserve

March 13: The Food & Drug Administration: Granted Roche AG an emergency approval for automated coronavirus testing kits; issued an emergency approval to Thermo Fisher for a coronavirus test within 24 hours of receiving the request

March 13: HHS announced funding for the development of two new rapid diagnostic tests, which would be able to detect coronavirus in approximately 1 hour

March 14: The Coronavirus Relief Bill passed the House of Representatives. The Trump Administration announced the European travel ban will extend to the UK and Ireland

March 15: President Trump held a phone call with over two dozen grocery store executives to discuss on-going demand for food and other supplies. HHS announced it is projected to have 1.9 million COVID-19 tests available in 2,000 labs this week

March 15: Google announced a partnership with the Trump Administration to develop a website dedicated to coronavirus education, prevention, & local resources. All 50 states were contacted through FEMA to coordinate “federally-supported, state-led efforts” to end coronavirus

March 16: President Trump: Held a tele-conference with governors to discuss coronavirus preparedness and response; participated in a call with G7 leaders who committed to increasing coordination in response to the coronavirus and restoring global economic confidence; announced that the first potential vaccine for coronavirus has entered a phase one trial in a record amount of time Announced “15 days to slow the spread” coronavirus guidance

March 16: The FDA announced empowering states to authorize tests developed and used by labs in their states. Asst. Secretary for Health confirmed the availability of 1 million coronavirus tests, and projected 2 million tests available the next week and 5 million the following

March 17: President Trump announced: CMS expands tele-health benefits for Medicare beneficiaries; relevant Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act penalties will not be enforced; the Army Corps of Engineers is on ”standby” to assist federal & state governments.

March 17: President Trump spoke to fast food executives from Wendy’s, McDonald’s and Burger King to discuss drive-thru services recommended by CDC

March 17: Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin met with lawmakers to discuss stimulus measures to relieve the economic burden of coronavirus on certain industries, businesses, and American workers

March 17: Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue announced a partnership between USDA, Baylor University, McLane Global, and Pepsi Co. to provide one million meals per weak to rural children in response to widespread school closures

March 17: The Treasury Department: Contributed $10 billion through the economic stabilization fund to the Federal Reserve’s commercial paper funding facility; deferred $300 billion in tax payments for 90 days without penalty, up to $1 million for individuals & $10 million for business

March 17: The Department of Defense announced it will make available to HHS up to five million respirator masks and 2,000 ventilators

March 18: President Trump announced: Temporary closure of the U.S.-Canada border to non-essential traffic; plans to invoke the Defense Production Act in order to increase the number of necessary supplies needed to combat coronavirus; FEMA has been activated in every region at its highest level of response; the U.S. Navy will deploy USNS Comfort and USNS Mercy hospital ships All foreclosures and evictions will be suspended for a period of time

March 18: Secretary of Defense Mark Esper confirmed: 1 million masks are now immediately available The Army Corps of Engineers is in NY consulting on how to best assist state officials

March 18: HHS temporarily suspended a regulation that prevents doctors from practicing across state lines

March 18: President Trump spoke to: Doctors, physicians, and nurses on the front lines containing the spread of coronavirus; 130 CEOs of the Business Roundtable to discuss on-going public-private partnerships in response to the coronavirus pandemic

March 19: President Trump Announced: Very encouraging progress shown by anti-malaria drug Hydroxychloroquine for fighting coronavirus; Carnival Cruise Lines will make ships available for use as hospitals in impacted areas to use for non-coronavirus patients

March 19: Vice President Pence announced tens of thousands of ventilators have been identified that can be converted to treat patients The State Department issued a global level 4 health advisory, telling Americans to avoid all international travel due to coronavirus

March 19: President Trump directed FEMA to take the lead on the Federal Government’s coronavirus response & visited FEMA HQ with Vice President Pence for a video call with Governors

March 20: The U.S. and Mexico agreed to mutually restrict nonessential cross-border traffic

March 20: Secretary Mnuchin announced at the direction of President Trump that tax day will be moved from April 15 to July 15 for all taxpayers and businesses

March 20: President Trump: Spoke with Sen. Schumer about coronavirus response & stimulus measures; held a call with over 12,000 small business owners to discuss relief efforts; announced the CDC will invoke Title 42 to provide border patrol with tools to secure the borders

March 20: The Department of Education announced it will: Not enforce standardized testing requirements for the remainder of the school year; allow federal student loan borrowers to stop payments without penalty for 60 days

March 20: Secretary Azar announced: FEMA is coordinating and assisting coronavirus testing at labs across the country The CDC is suspending all illegal entries to the country based on the public health threat, via Section 362 of the Public Health & Security Act

March 20: Secretary Azar sent a letter to all 50 Governors announcing that the federal government is buying and making available 200,000 testing swabs

March 21: Vice President Pence announced to date over 195,000 Americans tested for coronavirus and have received their results

March 21: The Trump Administration announced HHS placed an order for hundreds of millions of N95 masks through FEMA

March 21: The FDA announced it had given emergency approval to a new coronavirus test that delivers results in hours, with an intended rollout of March 30

March 21: Adm. Giroir confirmed 10 million testing kits had been put into the commercial market from March 2 through March 14

March 22: President Trump approved major disaster declarations for: Washington State California

March 22: President Trump announced: Governors will remain in command of National Guard forces & the federal govt will fund 100% of operations cost He directed the federal govt to provide 4 large federal medical stations with 2,000 beds for CA & 1,000 beds for NY & WA

March 22: President Trump confirmed his administration was working with Peru & Honduras to return Americans stranded in both countries as a result of travel restrictions

March 22: Vice President Pence announced: The testing backlog will be resolved by midweek To date, over 254,000 Americans have been tested for coronavirus and received their results

March 22: President Trump announced that the USNS Mercy will be deployed to Los Angeles

March 22: FEMA issued guidance for tribal governments to seek federal assistance under the President’s emergency declaration

March 23: President Trump signed an executive order invoking section 4512 of the Defense Production Act to prohibit the hoarding of vital medical supplies

March 23: VP Pence announced: 313,000 Americans were tested for the coronavirus & received results FEMA established a supply chain stabilization task force so Americans get supplies they need HHS will have commercial labs prioritize testing for hospitalized patients

March 23: The White House Office of Science & Technology Policy announced a public-private consortium to: Advance coronavirus research Provide access to computing technology and resources for researchers

March 23: Attorney General Barr announced: The Justice Department held a National Task Force meeting on hoarding and price gouging; each of the 93 U.S. Attorney General offices is designating a lead prosecutor to prevent hoarding

March 23: President Trump announced HHS is working to designate essential medical supplies as “scarce” to prohibit hoarding of these items

March 23: The Treasury Department announced it is working with the Federal Reserve to lend up to $300 billion to businesses and local governments

March 24: President Trump announced the Army Corps of Engineers & the National Guard are constructing four hospitals and four medical centers in New York

March 24: President Trump approved a major disaster declaration for the state of Iowa related to the coronavirus outbreak

March 24: Vice President Pence: Confirmed FEMA sent New York 2,000 ventilators; announced individuals who have recently been in New York should self-quarantine for 14 days

March 24: Dr. Deborah Birx announced the U.S. has conducted more coronavirus tests in the last week than South Korea has over the prior eight weeks

March 24: The U.S. Army issued orders for three army hospitals to deploy their health care professionals to New York and Washington state, at the direction of Secretary of the Army Ryan McCarthy

March 25: President Trump approved major disaster declarations related to the #coronavirus outbreak for: Texas, Florida, North Carolina

March 25: President Trump & Vice President Pence held a conference call with 140 non-profit organization leaders, including The Salvation Army & The Red Cross, to discuss coronavirus response efforts

March 25: President Trump signed a bill reauthorizing The Older Americans Act, which supports senior citizens by providing meals, transportation, and other crucial services

March 25: Vice President Pence: Held a conference call with equipment manufacturers to discuss on-going coronavirus response efforts; announced 432,000 Americans have been tested for coronavirus and received results; confirmed 4,000 ventilators were delivered to New York

March 26: President Trump approved major disaster declarations related to the coronavirus outbreak for: Illinois New Jersey Maryland Missouri

March 26: President Trump announced the USNS Comfort will depart for NYC on Saturday to assist in the #coronavirus response – 3 weeks ahead of schedule.

March 26: President Trump participated in a video conference with the leaders of the G20 to discuss the global coronavirus response & the need for countries to share information and data on the spread of the virus

March 26: President Trump held a phone call with Chinese President Xi Jinping to discuss the coronavirus

March 26: Vice President Pence announced 552,000 Americans have been tested for #coronavirus and received their results

March 26: Dr. Fauci announced the Federal Government is working with companies to speed up production of potential #coronavirus vaccines while those drugs are still in the trial phase

March 27: President Trump signed The #Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act Into Law

March 27: President Trump signed a Defense Production Act memorandum ordering General Motors (GM) “to accept, perform, and prioritize federal contractors for ventilators

March 27: President Trump signed an executive order allowing the military to activate members of the Selected Reserve and Ready Reserve to active duty to assist with the Federal response to the coronavirus

March 27: President Trump approved major disaster declarations related to the coronavirus outbreak for: South Carolina Puerto Rico

March 27: President Trump appointed Office of Trade and Manufacturing policy director Peter Navarro to serve as the Defense Production Act Policy Coordinator

March 27: President Trump announced that 100,000 ventilators are projected to be manufactured in the next 100 days, three times the amount typically manufactured in one year

March 27: President Trump announced that Boeing offered the use of three “Dreamlifter” cargo air crafts to transport medical supplies across the country

March 27: Partnering with FEMA, the CDC, and the Coronavirus Task Force, Apple released a coronavirus app which allows users to screen for their symptoms

March 27: President Trump spoke with British Prime Minister Boris Johnson about the global coronavirus response and committed to helping provide ventilators to the U.K. where possible

March 27: Vice President Pence announced that 685,000 Americans have been tested for coronavirus and received their test results

March 27: Emory University began enrolling participants for a phase one clinical trial, sponsored by the NIH’s National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), of a new, potential coronavirus vaccine

March 27: FEMA Administrator Pete Gaynor spoke to the director of each of the state’s emergency operations about the state-led, federally-supported coronavirus response effort

March 27: The USNS Mercy arrived in the port of Los Angelse to help relieve the strain on hospital facilities in Southern California

March 28: President Trump visited Norfolk, VA to send off the USNS Comfort to New York City where it will help relieve the strain on local hospitals

March 28: President Trump approved major disaster declarations related to the coronavirus outbreak for: Guam; Michigan; Massachusetts; Kentucky; Colorado

March 28: President Trump spoke with New York Governor Andrew Cuomo and Florida Governor Ron DeSantis regarding the coronavirus response effort

March 28: The CDC issued new guidance for residents of New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut to avoid non-essential domestic travel for 14 days to #StopTheSpread of the coronavirus within the U.S.

March 29: President Trump announced that CDC guidelines will be extended through April 30 to promote social distancing and other measures to stop the spread of the coronavirus

March 29: President Trump approved major disaster declarations related to the coronavirus outbreak for: Connecticut Oregon Georgia Washington, DC

March 29: President Trump met with supply chain distributors including FedEx, Cardinal Health, and UPS to discuss ways to get state and local governments necessary medical supplies to combat the coronavirus

March 29: President Trump congratulated the Army Corps of Engineers for having completed construction on a 2,900 bedroom temporary hospital at the Javits Center in New York

March 29: President Trump tweeted his support for the FDA to expedite the approval process to approve mask sterilization equipment produced by Battelle

March 29: President Trump announced the on-going study of 1,100 patients in New York being treated with Hydroxychloroquine for coronavirus

March 29: President Trump directed the Treasury & Labor Departments to look at reinstating deductions of business expenses at restaurants, bars, and entertainment businesses to help the hospitality industry

March 29: The first “Project Airbridge” shipment of medical supplies from abroad, organized by FEMA, landed at JFK airport, carrying 80 tons of masks, face shields, and other vital medical supplies

March 29: President Trump announced that Cigna and Humana are waving co-pays for coronavirus treatment

March 29: Vice President Pence sent a letter to hospital administrators requesting that hospitals across the country report their coronavirus data to the Federal Government in addition to state authorities

March 29: Adm. Giroir announced that 894,000 Americans have been tested for coronavirus and received their results

March 29: HHS accepted 30 million doses of Hydroxychloroquine, donated by Sandoz, and one million doses of Chloroquine, donated by Bayer Pharmaceuticals, for clinical trials and possible treatment of coronavirus patients

March 30: President Trump announced that one million Americans have been tested for #coronavirus and received their results

March 30: President Trump approved major disaster declarations related to the coronavirus outbreak for: Alabama; Kansas; Pennsylvania; Rhode Island

March 30: Secretary Azar announced that the FDA has approved Battelle’s N95 mask sanitization process for use to decontaminate tens of thousands of masks per day

March 30: President Trump announced further private sector commitments to manufacture personal protective equipment (PPE) by MyPillow, Honeywell, Jockey, Procter & Gamble, and United Technologies

March 30: President Trump announced, to date, FEMA has dedicated $1.3 billion to assist New York State’s coronavirus response

March 30: President Trump announced “more than 14,000” National Guard service members have been activated to respond to the coronavirus outbreak

March 30: President Trump spoke with the nation’s governors about their need for medical supplies

March 30: President Trump announced that in the coming days the Federal Government will be delivering: 400 ventilators to Michigan; 300 ventilators to New Jersey; 150 ventilators to Louisiana; 150 ventilators to Illinois; 50 ventilators to Connecticut

March 30: President Trump spoke to Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte of Italy and pledged to send $100 million of medical supplies to aid Italy’s battle against coronavirus

March 30: Answering President Trump’s call for the private sector to join the fight against the coronavirus, Ford Motor Company committed to producing 50,000 ventilators in the next 100 days

March 30: On coronavirus testing, Secretary Azar announced that the U.S. is currently testing nearly 100,000 samples per day

March 30: HHS took steps to accelerate a clinical trial of a potential coronavirus vaccine developed by Janssen Research & Development

March 30: CMS announced new regulatory changes to cut red tape and give flexibility to America’s health care workers by relaxing hospital workforce regulations, expanding child care, meal, and laundry services for health care workers, expanding tele-health reimbursement, and more

March 30: The USNS Comfort arrived in New York Harbor, providing more than 1,000 more hospital beds for patients without coronavirus, to relieve pressure on local hospitals

March 30: The USNS Mercy began treating patients in Los Angeles

March 31: President Trump officially issued “30 Days To Slow The Spread” guidance to mitigate the outbreak of coronavirus

March 31: President Trump approved major disaster declarations related to the coronavirus outbreak for: Ohio; Montana

March 31: President Trump participated in a conference call with executives of American Network Service Providers to promote connectivity amid social distancing

March 31: President Trump announced that the federal government is stockpiling 10,000 ventilators to be urgently distributed as needed once the coronavirus pandemic hits its peak in the U.S.

March 31: President Trump announced that the Treasury Department and SBA are rapidly mobilizing money from the CARES Act’s $349 billion paycheck protection program, with the program set to be “up and running” by April 3

March 31: President Trump spoke to Michigan Governor Whitmer about the state’s need for ventilators

March 31: President Trump announced the Army Corps of Engineers & FEMA will construct: 8 facilities with 50,000 bed capacity in California A field hospital with 250 bed capacity in Michigan; 2 field hospitals in Louisiana with 500 bed capacity; an alternative care sight in New Orleans with a 3,000 bed capacity

March 31: President Trump spoke with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan about the international effort to defeat the coronavirus and support the global economy

March 31: President Trump and the First Lady spoke with their Majesties King Felipe VI and Queen Letizia of Spain about efforts to combat the coronavirus

March 31: Vice President Pence announced that 10 states now have access to federal funding for The National Guard to respond to the coronavirus outbreak

March 31: Vice President Pence announced that 17,000 National Guard Servicemen have been activated across the country to assist in the coronavirus response

March 31: Vice President Pence announced that 1.1 million coronavirus tests have been completed

March 31: Adm. Giroir & Surgeon General Adams issued an open letter to the U.S. health care community about how to optimize the use of ventilators

March 31: The FDA issued an emergency use authorization for a two-minute coronavirus antibody test developed by Bodysphere Inc.

March 31: The Treasury Department and IRS launched the employee retention credit, created by the CARES Act to incentivize businesses to keep their employees on payroll, and said businesses can begin using it

March 31: The VA announced that it had expanded virtual services to veterans, continuing to provide care while limiting in-person interactions that could potentially harm vulnerable populations at VA facilities