In Defying the Odds, we discuss Trump's approach to governing. The 2019 update includes a chapter on the 2018 midterms.
Remarks by President Trump, Vice President Pence, and Members of the Coronavirus Task Force in Press Conference, March 13, 2020
Q Thank you so much, Mr. President. Dr. Fauci said earlier this week that the lag in testing was, in fact, “a failing.” Do you take responsibility for that? And when can you guarantee that every single American who needs a test will be able to have a test? What’s the date of that?
THE PRESIDENT: Yeah, no, I don’t take responsibility at all, because we were given a — a set of circumstances and we were given rules, regulations, and specifications from a different time. It wasn’t meant for this kind of an event with the kind of numbers that we’re talking about. And what we’ve done is redesigned it very quickly with the help of the people behind me. And we’re now in very, very strong shape.
Q Thank you, Mr. President. Yamiche Alcindor from PBS NewsHour.
THE PRESIDENT: Yes.
Q My first question is: You said that you don’t take responsibility, but you did disband the White House pandemic office, and the officials that were working in that office left this administration abruptly. So what responsibility do you take to that? And the officials that worked in that office said that you — that the White House lost valuable time because that office was disbanded. What do you make of that?
THE PRESIDENT: Well, I just think it’s a nasty question because what we’ve done is — and Tony has said numerous times that we’ve saved thousands of lives because of the quick closing. And when you say “me,” I didn’t do it. We have a group of people I could —
Q It’s your administration.
THE PRESIDENT: I could ask perhaps — my administration — but I could perhaps ask Tony about that because I don’t know anything about it. I mean, you say — you say we did that. I don’t know anything about it.
Q You don’t know about the —
THE PRESIDENT: We’re spending — I don’t know. It’s the —
Q — about the reorganization that happened at the National Security Council?
THE PRESIDENT: It’s the — it’s the administration. Perhaps they do that. You know, people let people go. You used to be with a different newspaper than you are now. You know, things like that happen.
Q But this was a — this was an org- —
THE PRESIDENT: Okay. Please go ahead.
Q This was an organization at the National Security Council.
THE PRESIDENT: We’re doing a great job. Let me tell you, these professionals behind me and the — these great, incredible doctors and business people — the best in the world. And I can say that. Whether it’s retailers or labs, or anything you want to say, these are the best of the world. We’re doing a great job