California Gov. Gavin Newsom offered rare praise of President Donald Trump’s administration for an effective response to contain an outbreak of the novel coronavirus on the Grand Princess cruise ship.
“We had a private conversation, but he said, ‘We’re gonna do the right thing’ and ‘You have my support, all of our support, logistically and otherwise,'” Newsom said Monday, March 9, reported the Newsweek.
“He said everything that I could have hoped for. And we had a very long conversation, and every single thing he said, they followed through on,” he added.
The ship, which carried 3,500 people from 54 countries, docked in Oakland, California, this week after circling waters off the coast of the state for two days while health officials discussed if it was safe to let the ship dock on American soil.
Twenty-one passengers from the Grand Princess tested positive for the virus, including 19 crew members. On Monday, the ship allowed over 400 people to disembark and unloaded more passengers on Tuesday. Two infected travelers were taken to hospitals and 19 crew members who appeared to be asymptomatic remained on the ship in isolated cabins, according to the USA Today.
Newsom, who declared a state of emergency in California last Wednesday, said that his state has received consistent support from the Trump’s administration as the state allowed passengers to disembark.
“Every single thing … has been consistent with expectation we’d repatriate these passengers and do it in a way that does justice to the spirit that defines the best of our country and the state of California,” Newsom said.
California Gov. Newsom had kind words for Pres. Trump and Vice Pres. Pence when asked about the administration’s handling of coronavirus and cruise ships:
— ABC News (@ABC) March 9, 2020
The Trump administration has face criticism from Democrats and media outlets for its response to the coronavirus outbreak. On Monday, White House press secretary Stephanie Grisham encouraged Americans to treat the coronavirus like they’re going through “a severe flu season” and called on Democrats to stop politicizing the disease.
President Trump reiterated that the risk of getting infected is low to the average American and also said the seasonal flu is more dangerous than the coronavirus while trying to ease the virus panic in the United States. On Tuesday, Air Force Brig. Gen. Paul A. Friedrichs, Joint Staff surgeon agreed with the president’s assertion, reported the Breibart News.
“So, the president is right. I know you’re shocked that I said that, but the president is right,” Friedrichs said. “There are more people ill with the seasonal flu than there are ill with coronavirus worldwide and in the United States and in the military.”
“The reasons that we are taking the precautions that you are seeing is that this is a new virus and we are continuing to learn about this virus, about how easy it is to spread the virus, and in particular and in an environment like this in close spaces, we’re trying to figure out the best way to mitigate the risk until we have solid data on that,” he added.