An increasingly nervous Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-KY) on Monday night lashed out at former President Barack Obama, days after Obama reportedly described the Donald Trump’s response to the coronavirus as an “absolute chaotic disaster.”
“I think President Obama should have kept his mouth shut,” the Senate Majority Leader told Lara Trump, the president’s daughter-in-law, during an online Trump campaign event, according to Politico.
McConnell added that the critique was “classless” and said former presidents should follow “the tradition that the Bushes set up of not critiquing the president who comes after you.”
The Kentucky senator also complained in his interview with Lara Trump that “the Obama administration did not leave to this administration any kind of game plan” for a pandemic.
However, as pointed out by Ron Klain, who served as Ebola Czar in the Obama administration, the Obama administration’s National Security Council developed a step by step playbook on how to fight pandemics. While the Trump administration was told of the playbook’s existence in 2017, it was never used.
Klain responded to McConnell’s charge on Twitter:
“We literally left them a 69-page Pandemic Playbook…. that they ignored,” Klain noted. “And an office called the Pandemic Preparedness Office… that they abolished. And a global monitoring system called PREDICT .. that they cut by 75%,” he added.
We literally left them a 69-page Pandemic Playbook…. that they ignored
And an office called the Pandemic Preparedness Office… that they abolished.
And a global monitoring system called PREDICT .. that they cut by 75% https://t.co/OD94v0UI4n
— Ronald Klain (@RonaldKlain) May 12, 2020
Trump has vehemently defended his administration’s widely criticized response to the pandemic and Republicans have by and large stood with him.