Donald Trump's extreme incompetence now represents a serious danger to the health and well being of all U.S. citizens. An article written by Laurie Garnett in the Foreign Policy Journal reveals the inexcusable lack of preparation for the coronavirus pandemic. Following are some examples of the Trump administration's egregiously inept and destructive actions undermining our public health care system and thereby our ability to effectively respond to the present COVID-19 pandemic.

In the spring of 2018, the White House pushed Congress to cut funding for Obama-era disease security programs, proposing eliminating $252 million in committed resources for rebuilding health systems in three African countries ravaged by the Ebola outbreak. Other Trump efforts reducing national health care spending and cutting the global disease fighting budgets of the CDC, NSC, DHS and HHS. He also eliminated the government's complex crises fund.

In May of 2018, he ordered the NSC's entire global health security unit shut down. The global health section of the CDC was so drastically cut in 2018 that much of the staff was laid off and the number of countries it was working with was reduced from 49 to 10. Trump has also attempted to reduce the U.S. Public Health Service Commissioned Corps by 40 percent.

While countries in the EU, South Korea and elsewhere had had significant success in reducing COVID-19 cases we in the U.S. are experiencing a frightening increase in cases and have no national plan to deal with this dire health emergency.

Instead of instituting a science based national plan, Trump continues to misinform and lie, thereby exacerbating the enormous problems posed by the pandemic. How egregious do the many Trump blunders and lies have to become before people recognize the existential threat he and his spineless sycophants in Congress represent?

Al Matheis


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