Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) said on Tuesday that the efforts by Democrats to impeach President Trump distracted the government from being able to focus on coronavirus when it came up during the trial; plus, Trump admin reduces fuel-efficiency standards to allow automakers to produce more affordable vehicles for Americans.
McConnell: Impeachment “diverted” government’s attention from coronavirus
When news of the coronavirus outbreak spreading in Wuhan, China first arose in January, lawmakers were bogged down with the impeachment trial of President Donald Trump. This distracted Congress and the Trump administration from giving its full attention toward the matter that would go on to become a worldwide pandemic.
“It came up while we were tied down in the impeachment trial. And I think it diverted the attention of the government because everything every day was all about impeachment,” McConnell said in an interview on Tuesday.
The House of Representatives voted on January 15 to send two articles of impeachment against President Donald Trump – abuse of power and obstruction of Congress – to the Senate.
The Senate ultimately voted on February 5 to acquit President Trump of the two separate articles of impeachment against him, the abuse of power and obstruction of Congress, following months of testimonies and investigations.
Democrats blame Trump, but Trump first to take action
While Democrats continually point the finger at President Trump over the COVID-19 pandemic, there is hardly a member of Congress, or any other leader in the United States, be it a mayor or governor for that matter, that did not demonstrate some hesitancy over the likelihood of the virus becoming widespread in America.
In fact, Trump was lambasted as a racist” and “xenophobic” when he what’s the first to take action by enacting a travel ban on January 31, with the policy taking effect on February 2, for any foreign national who had traveled within China in the last 14 days from entering into the US.
In addition, Trump restricted all flights coming from China to only 7 US airports where passengers would be screened and evaluated.
President Trump was again heavily criticized on March 11 when he made the decision to ban most travel from foreign nationals who have been in 26 European countries beginning on March 13 for 30 days amid the pandemic.
Top infectious disease expert praises Trump’s action
The nation’s top infectious disease expert, Director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, Dr. Anthony Fauci said that the early response by President Trump in blocking travel from China helped the United States avoid the situation that Italy now finds itself in.
“The president’s decision to essentially have a major blocking of travel from China, that already had an effect of not seeding the way, in Europe – Italy didn’t do that,” Dr. Fauci said during an interview with ABC.
“What we’re doing now with the other travel restrictions — so you block infections from coming in, and then within that is when you have containment and mitigation.”
“And that’s the reason why the kinds of things we’re doing that may seem like an over-reaction, but will keep us away from that worst-case scenario,” Fauci added.
Trump rolls back fuel-efficiency standards to help produce less expensive vehicles
With the knowledge that the pocketbooks of Americans are going to be hard hit by the economic impact of coronavirus, the Trump administration rolled back Obama-era fuel-efficiency standards in order to help lawmakers reduce the cost of producing vehicles.
This should result in new vehicles that are less expensive for Americans to purchase.
The new rule changes standards that required lawmakers to produce vehicles that averaged nearly 55 miles per gallon by 2025.
Under the revision by the Trump administration, the change rule will set that standard to around 40 miles per gallon by 2026. This will bring mileage below what automakers have said is possible for them to achieve.
In turn, this will allow Americans to purchase newer vehicles that have better safety features, while still guzzling less gas than the older models they are driving now which will provide an all-around win for automakers and consumers, all while helping to boost the economy.