Donald Trump Says ‘Complainers’ Should Have ‘Stocked Up’ On Medical Supplies Before Crisis

U.S. President Donald Trump participates in the daily coronavirus task force briefing in the Brady Briefing Room at the White House on March 31, 2020 in Washington, DC.
Win McNamee / Getty Images

President Donald Trump lashed out at the hospitals and states calling for additional medical supplies in order to cope with the rapidly growing coronavirus outbreak in the U.S., tweeting that they were “complainers” and should have been better prepared before the crisis hit.

“Massive amounts of medical supplies, even hospitals and medical centers, are being delivered directly to states and hospitals by the Federal Government. Some have insatiable appetites & are never satisfied (politics?). Remember, we are a backup for them,” he began his comments.

He went on to say that those now needing additional supplies should have planned better and stated that some states are happy with the support they’ve received so far.

“The complainers should have been stocked up and ready long before this crisis hit. Other states are thrilled with the job we have done. Sending many Ventilators today, with thousands being built. 51 large cargo planes coming in with medical supplies. Prefer sending directly to hospitals,” he wrote.

Trump has been the target of much criticism for what some people say was a delayed and inadequate initial response to the COVID-19 spread. In early days, Trump suggested that the disease may fade away during the warmer months and, once it reached the shores of the U.S., that the disease was well under control.

His administration has also received backlash for mismanaging both supplies and the process of testing Americans to help mitigate the spread of the coronavirus.

Now, the president is seeking to redirect the blame toward the states facing a lack of supplies.

New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio has said that the city needs 3.3 million more N95 masks to protect healthcare workers as they battle the virus. They’ve also requested 400 ventilators to deal with the surge of cases in local hospitals. The state of New York has had nearly 2,000 deaths from the virus.

But even as medical workers call out the conditions under which they are working, Trump has suggested that perhaps healthcare worker are causing the shortage by stealing supplies.

On Sunday during a press conference, the president said that perhaps the masks were going out “the back door” of hospitals. He walked back his comments somewhat, saying that he didn’t know for sure what was taking place, but thought it should be looked into. He later repeated his suspicions.

On Thursday morning, he tweeted that New York Democrat Chuck Schumer should try to figure out what is happening with all of the state’s supplies.

“Stop complaining & find out where all of these supplies are going,” he wrote.