Democrat Maxine Waters is taking aim at Donald Trump, calling the president an “incompetent idiot” after a report that he sent 18 tons of critical medical supplies to China at the same time that he was downplaying fears of the coronavirus at home.
The California congresswoman was reacting to a report that the Trump administration shared a trove of personal protective equipment (PPE) with China as the country was becoming overwhelmed with the coronavirus outbreak and before it had spread across the United States. As CNN noted, hospitals across the United States are now in dire need of PPE but having difficulty getting it.
But while the Trump administration was shipping close to 35,000 pounds of “masks, gowns, gauze, respirators, and other vital materials” to China back on February 7, Trump was making public statements downplaying fears of the virus spreading to the United States as it had in China.
The day following the announcement of the shipment of PPE to China, Trump was asked if there were worries of the outbreak becoming a pandemic and denied it.
“No. Not at all,” said Trump, who weeks later would say that he always knew the coronavirus outbreak was a pandemic.
“And — we’re — we have it totally under control. It’s one person coming in from China, and we have it under control. It’s — going to be just fine.”
The report revisiting the Trump administration’s decision to send PPE to China was blasted by Waters, who took to Twitter to launch a sharply worded attack.
“Trump, you incompetent idiot!” she wrote.
“You sent 18 tons of PPE to China early but ignored warnings & called COVID19 concerns a hoax. You’ve endangered doctors, nurses, aids, orderlies, & janitors – all risking their lives to save ours. Pray 4 forgiveness for the harm that you’re causing!’
Waters have been one of the most vocal critics of Trump, at times clashing with the president. Back in 2018, after a series of incidents in which members of the Trump administration were jeered in public, Waters encouraged people at a Los Angeles rally to continue making administration members feel uncomfortable if they encountered them in public.
As Time noted, Trump shot back by claiming that she “called for harm” to his supporters and warned, “be careful what you wish for Max!” Waters later had to cancel planned appearances at political rallies after her campaign said she received credible death threats. Trump continued to attack Waters on Twitter after the canceled events, the report noted.