Republican Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan responded to a question from CNN host Jake Tapper about President Donald Trump’s leadership by acknowledging that the country has “made some progress” at flattening the coronavirus curve and saving lives.
Hogan, a frequent Trump critic, praised White House coronavirus task force member Dr. Anthony Fauci but also criticized the federal government’s response to the coronavirus pandemic in an op-ed earlier this month.
“You say under that under President Trump the U.S.’s inaction cost American lives,” Tapper asked during a Sunday “State of the Union” interview. “Scott Gottlieb now says more than 300,000 in the U.S. could die from the virus by the end of the year. Do you think President Trump is fit to lead the country through this crisis?”
“Well, I think that we — look, when we were talking about at the beginning of the crisis, the president’s messaging was that there were just 15 cases and soon it would be down to zero,” Hogan said. “So obviously, he was not taking it as seriously as he should have at the beginning.”
“But some of the expert public health doctors were telling us we may have as many as 2 million deaths,” he continued. “So as tragic as it is when we’re at 140-some thousand deaths, we have made some progress in flattening the curve and saving some lives. So how many more can we save by actions we take right now? That’s really the question. And how many could we have saved if we had started earlier? But it could have been a lot worse, believe it or not.” (RELATED: Rep. Karen Bass Wants New Stay-At-Home Orders In Los Angeles, Implies Mask Wearing Isn’t Enough)
Tapper reminded viewers that the 2 million projection was assuming the U.S. “did nothing in response and just sat back and let the virus ravage the country, which obviously wasn’t going to happen.”