The 2014 Ebola outbreak resulted in 11 cases and two deaths under the leadership of former President Barack Obama, who was largely criticized by Republicans ahead of the 2014 midterms for his response.
The viral outbreak the United States currently faces has claimed the lives of over 130 thousand Americans and has nearly three million cases. These numbers continue to rise.
Nevertheless, President Donald Trump and his administration insist that the federal response to the virus has been exemplary, despite misinformation and politicizing from the President.
Trump's Republican allies are falling in line to praise his response as well—some of them are the very same lawmakers who excoriated Obama for not doing enough to contain Ebola.
Senator Joni Ernst (R-IA) called said in 2014 that Obama's Ebola response was "failed leadership," but an interview with CNN's Dana Bash indicates that she's applying some seriously different standards to Donald Trump.
CNN's Dana Bash: You said in 2014 that Obama showed "failed leadership" with Ebola, when only 2 Americans died. Wou… https://t.co/7EQEWEy1cR— Justin Baragona (@Justin Baragona) 1593956675.0
After pointing out that cases in Ernst's home state of Iowa are rising, Bash said:
"So if President Obama showed failed leadership then, do you think President Trump is showing failed leadership now?"
Ernst answered by praising Iowa's virus response and noting that the death toll in her state was still low, leading Bash to reiterate her question regarding Trump's actions.
Ernst responded, partly blaming Democrats:
"No, I think that the President is stepping forward and we have Vice President Mike Pence that is spearheading the task force efforts...understanding where this came from, how it developed, of course, the push back that we got from the Democrats when the president did try to shut down travel from some of those hot spots, it was an extremely difficult environment to operate."
People didn't take kindly to the praise Ernst heaped upon the White House.
@justinbaragona Defending the indefensible. Shame— WHP (@WHP) 1593956859.0
@bjcreigh @annejowrites America ISN'T laughing— Renee Shatanoff (@Renee Shatanoff) 1593967320.0
@justinbaragona Sen. Ernst dancing around that question. https://t.co/suC6q5CcBs— Eat the Cake Annamae (@Eat the Cake Annamae) 1593960301.0
@justinbaragona That response confirms my belief that Ernst is either weapons grade corrupt or weapons grade stupid… https://t.co/U04AyDs7zf— Stephen Parsons (@Stephen Parsons) 1593957352.0
@justinbaragona Oh @joniernst , history books will mock you. You're complicit and the voters see you.— Book Jockey (@Book Jockey) 1593958339.0
Ernst is currently facing a competitive reelection campaign against businesswoman Theresa Greenfield.
People used Ernst's answer as another reason to endorse her opponent.
@justinbaragona Just donated to @GreenfieldIowa. Joni can go peddle her book after Nov 3rd especially for that answer.— ariella layton mom to 🐈🐈🐈 (@ariella layton mom to 🐈🐈🐈) 1593957350.0
@justinbaragona This is reprehensible. I hope Iowans vote for @GreenfieldIowa and get Ernst out of there— JC (@JC) 1593958474.0
@NastyNana16 @DaveNEdwards @justinbaragona @SenJoniErnst @realDonaldTrump I’m in Texas (we have two useless senator… https://t.co/JN0YDN8FxZ— FooishMother says Wear.Your.Fucking.Mask😷 (@FooishMother says Wear.Your.Fucking.Mask😷) 1593968202.0
@justinbaragona Congrats Joni! Thanks to this brilliant nonsense, I’ll be jumping in financially to support… https://t.co/9dFJGV1DKi— Jess McGrath (@Jess McGrath) 1593970082.0
Greenfield called Ernst's response an example of "failed leadership."