A new book by Washington Post reporters Damian Paletta and Yasmeen Abutaleb, Nightmare Scenario: Inside the Trump Administration’s Response to the Pandemic That Changed History, sheds new light on the incredible dysfunction in the Trump White House regarding the bungled COVID-19 response.
From the Washington Post:
In the early days of the coronavirus pandemic, as White House officials debated whether to bring infected Americans home for care, President Donald Trump suggested his own plan for where to send them, eager to suppress the numbers on U.S. soil.
“Don’t we have an island that we own?” the president reportedly asked those assembled in the Situation Room in February 2020, before the U.S. outbreak would explode. “What about Guantánamo?”
“We import goods,” Trump specified, lecturing his staff. “We are not going to import a virus.”
Aides were stunned, and when Trump brought it up a second time, they quickly scuttled the idea, worried about a backlash over quarantining American tourists on the same Caribbean base where the United States holds terrorism suspects.
The book is based on interviews with over 180 people including White House senior staff members and government health officials.
“Testing is killing me!” Trump reportedly exclaimed. “I’m going to lose the election because of testing! What idiot had the federal government do testing?”
“Uh, do you mean Jared?” Azar responded.
— Aaron Blake (@AaronBlake) June 21, 2021