In the face of the global pandemic that's killed over 5000 Americans, President Donald Trump is still expressing reluctance to employ federal powers to assist states hardest hit by the virus.
Among the most urgent of obstacles some governors are facing is a shortage of crucial medical equipment—including ventilators—often needed to treat the highly contagious respiratory virus.
Trump has expressed reluctance to allocate any of the equipment currently available from the Strategic National Stockpile, because he's skeptical that hard-hit states like New York actually need the amount of medical equipment they're requesting. He insists that the states should only rely on the federal government as a backup.
The President's son-in-law and senior advisor, Jared Kushner, inexplicably briefed reporters at the President's daily pandemic presser, where he echoed Trump's claims.
Kushner claimed that the federal stockpile was supposed to be "our stockpile," instead of the states' stockpile—apparently misunderstanding what the "United" in "United States" means and the reason for the federal government's existence.
Kushner was widely ridiculed for the bumbling justification, but soon officials quietly edited the Strategic National Stockpile's website to make Kushner's statement seem accurate, as CNN fact checker Daniel Dale pointed out.
The website's original text read, in part:
"When state, local, tribal, and territorial responders request federal assistance to support their response efforts, the stockpile ensures that the right medicines and supplies get to those who need them most during an emergency. Organized for scalable response to a variety of public health threats, this repository contains enough supplies to respond to multiple large-scale emergencies simultaneously."
After Kushner's claim that the stockpile wasn't intended for states to use, the text was hastily changed:
"The Strategic National Stockpile's role is to supplement state and local supplies during public health emergencies. Many states have products stockpiled, as well. The supplies, medicines, and devices for life-saving care contained in the stockpile can be used as a short-term stopgap buffer when the immediate supply of adequate amounts of these materials may not be immediately available."
Sloppily obscuring the truth to validate its own incompetence is as much of a trademark to the Trump family as the surname itself. This time, however, stuck out.
Keep in mind, this is the same administration that edited an official hurricane forecast with a sharpie to vindicate the President for a false tweet, along with 16,241+ other false statements.
The coverups aren't even good coverups, as people pointed out.
If you'd prefer your intelligence not be insulted on a daily basis, you can check your voter registration status here.
For a deeper look into Trump's ineptitude from people who were actually there, check out A Very Stable Genius, available here.