Trump Swipes At Governors For Failing To ‘Understand’ Pence’s Assurance On Testing

April 20, 2020
EDITORS' NOTE: TPM is making our COVID-19 coverage free to all readers during this national health crisis. If you’d like to support TPM's reporters, editors and staff, the best way to do so is to become a member.

President Trump, who has insisted that the onus is on states to ramp up testing in order to begin the process of reopening the economy, accused governors during Monday’s White House coronavirus task force briefing of failing to “understand” what Vice President Mike Pence told them over a call earlier Monday regarding testing capacity.

“They need to take the support where they can get it,” Trump said. “We’re here to stand with the governors.”

After Trump said that Pence explained the country’s testing capacity to governors and provided them with a list of labs with additional testing capacity during the call, the President then criticized Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan (R) and Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker (D) for misunderstanding what Pence was telling them.

Get TPM in your inbox, twice weekly.
Your subscription could not be saved. Please try again.
Your subscription has been successful.

“Some of the governors, like, as an example, the governor from Maryland, didn’t really understand the list,” Trump said. “He didn’t understand too much about what was going on.”

Trump also ripped Hogan for buying tests from South Korea because all “he needed” was to “get a little knowledge.”

The President went on to slam Pritzker, saying that he “didn’t understand his (testing) capacity” and that he could have “simply” asked the federal government to give “unlimited support.”

Scroll down for our full coverage of the briefing below:

Masthead Masthead
Founder & Editor-in-Chief:
Executive Editor:
Managing Editor:
Associate Editor:
Investigations Desk:
Senior Editor for Content Strategy and Audience Development:
Editor at Large:
General Counsel:
Head of Product:
Director of Technology:
Associate Publisher:
Front End Developer:
Senior Designer: