Vice President Mike Pence said President Donald Trump was “not happy” with the Chinese government’s handling of the coronavirus outbreak and failure to disclose the seriousness of the disease.
“The president’s made it clear he’s not happy,” Pence told “Fox News Sunday,” adding that the administration is currently looking into the situation and analyzing options.
“We’re going to make proper inquiries into this at the proper time” of the Chinese government, he continued.
The president has been emphasizing of late China’s culpability in the creation and spread of coronavirus, which has sickened some 2.1 million people and killed nearly 162,000 as of this writing — 40,000 in the U.S. alone.
“If they were knowingly responsible, certainly. If it was a mistake, a mistake is a mistake. But if they were knowingly responsible, yeah, then there should be consequences,” Trump said on Saturday.
“I haven’t ruled out anything — I want to look at the facts as they come in,” he added.
Pence noted further that the U.S. was conducting close to 150,000 coronavirus tests per day, but that more could be done because some labs remain underutilized.
“We think we can double that number by working with governors to activate all of the laboratories in their state,” he said.
That should help states begin to reopen their economies as per the president’s newly-issued guidelines last week.
Meanwhile Fox News reports that sources believe the initial transmission of the virus – a naturally occurring strain that was being studied there – was bat-to-human and that “patient zero” worked at the laboratory, then went into the population in Wuhan.
The sources explained that there was an extensive cover-up of data and information about COVID-19 orchestrated by the Chinese government.
Documents detail early efforts by doctors at the lab and early efforts at containment. The Wuhan wet market initially identified as a possible point of origin never sold bats, and the sources tell Fox News that blaming the wet market was an effort by China to deflect blame from the laboratory, along with the country’s propaganda efforts targeting the U.S. and Italy.
On Thursday, China’s foreign ministry pushed back on the suspicion that the virus escaped from the facility, by citing statements from the World Health Organization that there is no evidence the coronavirus came from a laboratory.
China moved quickly to shut down travel domestically from Wuhan to the rest of China, but did not stop international flights from Wuhan.
Additionally, the sources tell Fox News the World Health Organization (WHO) was complicit from the beginning in helping China cover its tracks.
“What we know is that the ground zero for this virus was within a few miles of that lab,” White House Trade Adviser Peter Navarro noted.
“First of all, the virus was spawned in China. Second of all, they hid the virus behind the shield of the World Health Organization. The third thing they did was basically hoard personal protective equipment and now they’re profiteering from it,” Navarro told host Maria Bartiromo, referencing the fact that many states have been dealing with a shortage of PPE for health care workers during the coronavirus crisis.
“I think it’s incumbent on China to prove that it wasn’t that lab,” Navarro went on to say.
He added that “more importantly, we know that for a critical six-week period of time, China used its influence at the World Health Organization to hide the virus from the world. This was a time where that virus could have been contained in Wuhan; instead, 5 million Chinese people went out from Wuhan and propagated the virus around the world.”
In my opinion this was a deliberate act by the ChiComs and they should pay the ultimate price.
Portions of this article appeared at USA Features News
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