As the national health crisis in the United States continues to worsen, New York has quickly become the epicenter of the pandemic in the United States.
New York City alone has over 20,000 confirmed cases of the virus, and the state's death toll skyrocketed by 110% in just 36 hours this week. The urgency is only exacerbated by a shortage of crucial ventilators to combat the respiratory virus.
Democratic New York Governor Andrew Cuomo warned the federal government that New York needs at least 30,000 ventilators to prepare for the virus's peak. So far, the Federal Emergency Management Association (FEMA) has only sent 400, with assurances from the White House that 4,000 more would be coming.
In a press conference on Tuesday, a visibly frustrated Cuomo said:
"The president says it's a war," the governor said. "Well, then, act like it's a war! You pick the 26,000 people who are going to die because you only sent 400 ventilators."
President Donald Trump didn't seem moved by Cuomo's plea, judging by a Thursday night interview with far-right Fox News host Sean Hannity, in which Trump expressed skepticism that New York really needs that many ventilators.
The President said:
"I have a feeling that a lot of the numbers that are being said for some areas are just bigger than they're going to be. I don't believe you need 40,000 or 30,000 ventilators. You know, at a major hospital sometimes they'll have two ventilators. All of a sudden they're saying, 'Can we order 30,000 ventilators?'"
The President's baseless comment about hospitals suddenly needing more ventilators after only having two signaled the way he intends to deflect blame this time.
Vox's Aaron Rupar believed the President would blame blue states for his own failures.
Trump is known for his reluctance to take responsibility—usually blaming Democrats, the media, former President Barack Obama, or skeptical Republicans for his shortcomings.
People agreed with Rupar that, even as American lives are threatened, Trump is prioritizing his reelection.
People didn't have faith that Trump's skepticism was based in any reality.
Trump has yet to invoke the Defense Production Act, which would compel private manufacturers to begin making necessary equipment, like ventilators.