Pallone on New GAO Report on Trump Administration’s COVID-19 Response
Energy and Commerce Chairman Frank Pallone, Jr. (D-NJ) released the following statement on the Government Accountability Office’s (GAO) new report on opportunities to improve the federal government’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic:
“GAO’s report provides a detailed accounting of the Trump Administration’s inept handling of the coronavirus pandemic. The report finds routine inconsistencies in the Administration’s testing data, perpetual shortages of critical supplies and poorly coordinated response efforts that allowed the virus to spread at alarming rates.
“The GAO’s findings echo concerns we heard from governors at a hearing earlier this month about how the federal government has hampered state efforts to deal with shortages of critical supplies. It raises questions about how the Trump Administration is allocating supplies from the Strategic National Stockpile, and how it will ensure the Stockpile is replenished to continue fighting COVID-19 infections. Two months ago, the Committee sent a letter to HHS Secretary Azar and FEMA Administrator Gaynor inquiring about some of the issues identified in this report, but we are still waiting for a response.
“GAO also once again confirms that the Trump Administration’s testing effort has been wholly inadequate, and the information coming out of the Administration has been contradictory and inconsistent.
“As infection rates spike in states across the country, this report underscores the urgent need for the Senate to take up the Heroes Act in order to properly rise to meet the challenge this virus continues to pose to our country.”