*This morning Senator Chuck Schumer was a guest on SiriusXM’s The Joe Madison Show to discuss President Trump’s address to the nation last night regarding the coronavirus crisis.
“He did not show any empathy for the people who were suffering. He did not show any real concern. It looked sort of, I’d call it robotic,” the senator told the host, Joe Madison. “It looked like he was just reading the teleprompter what someone put in front of him, but the lack of facts in the speech, they seem to regard this as a political speech. Well, the American people are clamoring for action.”
He also said the Senate has to continue working to get the relief bill passed (“We have no choice. If we pass this bill, it’ll, as you said, it’ll provide big, strong, immediate relief. So we’ve got to get that done, and let’s hope our Republican friends go along.”), and called for free testing and paid sick leave.
Senator Schumer: Donald Trump was ‘Robotic,’ ‘A Total Disappointment in His Leadership’
Sen. Chuck Schumer: This administration, Joe, has dithered. First, Donald Trump said it was a hoax. Donald Trump blamed it on the media. Donald Trump blamed it on the Democrats. It’s ridiculous. A true leader gets forward, gets ahead of the problem and doesn’t spend his time politicizing it and pointing fingers of blame. Donald Trump has been a total disappointment in his leadership here, and even the speech last night. It didn’t address the main things that had to be addressed, testing above all. And it had so many incorrect facts.
Host, Joe Madison: One of the things and I don’t know if you are aware and you can help us find out. I heard that this travel ban on European countries with the exception of Great Britain, that it blindsided some European leaders. Are you aware if that happened or not?
Chuck Schumer: It did, yes it did. They just did this, and they blindsided European leaders and lots of others who depend on travel. There are a lot of people who work in the travel industry, not only in Europe, but here when tons of Europeans come here and stay in the hotels, eat in restaurants. How many workers work in those places? A lot of people, a lot of poor people. And this came, he did it, Fauci I believe said that the next crisis is going to be in Europe. We have to stop it, but again, none of the things a leader would do, which would get the European leaders together, get the leaders of the industry together. Say this is what the problem is and this is why I have to do it..get ready for it. None of that.
Host, Joe Madison: Wow, and you’re the leader of the free world and you just pick up the phone and use it, or the Secretary of State would pick up the phone and say, look, this is coming down. I watched that speech. I gotta tell you when you’ve got six, maybe seven misstatements. The question is, who wrote it? Did they vet it? And did he read it beforehand? The delivery was awful. It was not reassuring.
Chuck Schumer: Yes. He did not show any empathy for the people who were suffering. He did not show any real concern. It looked sort of, I’d call it robotic. It looked like he was just reading the teleprompter what someone put in front of him, but the lack of facts in the speech, they seem to regard this as a political speech. Well, the American people are clamoring for action. We’ll go out and give a speech, but where’s the fact-checking? For the president to say he’s stopping all freight as well as people from coming from Europe when it was totally not true..that’s a huge misstatement of fact. I was just going to say, but this is typical of this administration. Facts don’t matter to them. This is all about Donald Trump, and what he likes to do is blame other people. We all know that. Your listeners know it. I know it. We all know it, and it doesn’t solve blame doesn’t solve problems.
Senator Schumer: Senators “Have No Choice” but to Work
Host, Joe Madison: We’ll get back to you later. Thank you. Appreciate you coming on
Chuck Schumer: Thank you Joe, and keep up your good work, and I wish all of your listeners, particularly during these times, may God give them good health.
Host, Joe Madison: And may you guys, look we’re about around the same age..that’s an older group of folk over there. Have you guys ladies and gentlemen of the Senate, have they decided whether they’re gonna… well you’ve got to continue working, don’t you? What do you do with your staff?
Chuck Schumer: We have no choice. If we pass this bill, it’ll, as you said, it’ll provide big, strong, immediate relief. So we’ve got to get that done, and let’s hope our Republican friends go along.
Senator Schumer Calls for Free Coronavirus Testing and Paid Sick Leave
Host, Joe Madison: What did you think…your reaction in that speech yesterday?
Sen. Chuck Schumer: Well, there were some things that really bothered me that were not in the speech. And there were things that bothered me that he had to correct it six times and I would say this is very serious and it’s not a political speech. It should have been directly aimed at what the problem is. And we have in New Rochelle, a very, very suburban community that is very diverse. We have a quarantine, a semi quarantine. And when I called the mayor of New Rochelle, Mayor Bramson, he said the biggest problem is lack of testing. If they had enough tests, they would know who had the virus, who was carrying the virus and who didn’t, and they could tell everyone else who didn’t have it that they could walk on the streets, go to the stores, shop in the restaurants, go to the schools and keep all those who had it in their homes. But without testing they have to go and just tell about everybody to not do those kinds of things… and Joe, he didn’t even mention testing. We need to get tests out and we need to make them free. If there are people who can’t afford the test and they think the doctor’s going to charge them two hundred bucks, they’re not going to show up and they’re going to walk around. So, getting the tests out and making them free, which is what our legislation that Speaker Pelosi and I have put together and we hope the House and Senate will vote on today. We don’t know what Senator McConnell and the Republicans will do. I know all our Democrats are for it, is key. There’s lots of things we should do. We want paid family leave, we want food, food for kids who can’t go to school. A lot of kids their best meals are the breakfast and lunch that are served in the schools. We’d like those to deliver to their homes if they’re in their homes. And we have an economic package that is not aimed at big business, it’s aimed at the average person. Maybe they should get some relief from mortgage payments if they don’t have work. There should be some monies for small businesses to prosper. And so we have a lot of things we should do and there must be paid sick leave. If you have to stay home you should not have to worry about losing your paycheck. There should be emergency unemployment insurance. Our package is aimed at average working people, not at the big corporate interest. One more point, Joe sorry, there’s so much to say here. Two days ago, it was reported President Trump has an economic relief package, wanted to give them relief to the big shale oil producers in Texas. That’s not what we need here. We need focus on people who are suffering and preventing the suffering from getting much worse.
SiriusXM and “The Joe Madison Show” (weekdays from 6-10am on Urban View channel 126).
Chelsea Kaufman | Manager, Corporate Communications