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John H. Terrell


Last updated 3/27/2020 at 3:33am

Dear Editor,

Trump claims that the Obama administration "didn't do anything" as millions of swine flu cases mounted. A typical Trump lie. Here's how it really went down:


Snopes reported: “The CDC first activated its Emergency Operations Center (EOC) on April 22, 2009. At the time, there were only two confirmed cases in the United States. On April 25, 2009, the World Health Organization (WHO) declared a public health emergency of international concern, and the following day the Obama administration did the same. At that time, there were about 20 confirmed cases (and no deaths).” NPR reported: “The first test to detect the new virus was approved by the FDA two days later.”

Shipments of the new CDC test began May 1.


Accordingly, “William Schaffner of Vanderbilt University School of Medicine told the Times that officials deserved ‘at least a B-plus’, while Mount Sinai virologist Peter Palese called the overall response “excellent.” (


In contrast, Slate reports: “the current governmental response to COVID-19 is disorganized, disinterested, dishonest, and, worst of all, cruel to everyone in the country.”


Susan Rice, former National Security Adviser under Obama noted, “The Trump administration ran through exercises as recently as last year that demonstrated that the country wasn’t prepared for a pandemic. But nothing was done to address the gaping holes in the system. She blasted Trump for repeatedly claiming, ‘Who could have imagined this? Who could have predicted this? We had no idea this could come.’”


"Well, that’s just false!” she said. “Not only did we know it could come, we should have prepared for it to come. As we did in the Obama administration, and as we gave them the wherewithal to do in the Trump administration.”



Oh, and if you want to blame Obama for what he didn’t do. For starters, he didn’t gut the CDC, he didn’t fire his epidemic response team, and he didn’t put his VP in charge of the response. That responsibility mainly fell on the leaders of Health and Human Services, Homeland Security, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.



John H. Terrell


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