With CNN host Brianna Keilar, White House trade advisor Peter Navarro argued that America “got dealt a bad hand by China.”
This didn’t sit well with CNN’s Keilar. Clearly flustered by the statement, Keilar abruptly responded, “Peter, that is just a waste of time to say that. I’m going to leave it there. Peter Navarro… We’re just trying to get our hands around… No, Peter Navarro, that’s it. We’re out of time. No, we’re out of time and that’s just… that’s ridiculous.”
Skip to the 10-minute mark to see the end of the segment:
Keilar argued the Trump administration was “clearly ill-prepared” for the pandemic. Keilar asked, “Peter, in fairness, the government was clearly ill-prepared for this, this is not something that, you know, viruses happen, and how awful they are, but they are things that happen, your government knew in the summer when it did a drill that this, if this happened, this would be a problem, and there was a lack of preparation, which is why we have you on to talk about the supply chain,” she asked.
“Sure, and may I comment on that?” Navarro answered.
“Right now,” Keilar continued, “it looks like the capacity for the U.S. is gonna be about 200,000 ventilators and what experts are saying is there could be a million needed, so are you going to be able to meet that demand?”
“So first of all,” he said.
“And is the president aware that relaxing restrictive measures is gonna mean that you need more than that?” she continued.
“Let me, let me bring you up on the history here of what we inherited,” Navarro responded. “In ’09 when the Biden, Obama administration had the H1N1 flu crisis, that should have been a wake-up call.”
“Peter, why are you wasting your time on this and not solving the problem that you have?” she interrupted. “Peter, why are you even talking about this?”
“You made the claim that this administration was ill-prepared,” he answered.
“I did not!” she denied.
“Run the tape, I just heard that!” he said.
“I mean, that is a fact, Peter,” Keilar replied. “That is a fact!”
“Why do I respond to you and you keep interrupting me?” he protested.
“You’re wasting everyone’s time with this. It’s 2020. The president was elected in 2016. Can you get to a million ventilators?” she asked.
Navarro said that the claim that the U.S. needed a million ventilators was “way way way out of proportion.”