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Trump slams Obama administration over COVID-19 testing, even though it first appeared in humans last year

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  • Donald Trump
    Donald Trump
    45th President of the United States

Speaking to reporters in the Oval Office with New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy, President Trump attacked the Obama administration for its lack of preparedness for the coronavirus pandemic, including inadequate testing. The COVID-19 virus first appeared in humans late last year, almost three years after President Obama left office.

Video Transcript

DONALD TRUMP: We started off with empty cupboards. The last administration left us nothing. We started off with bad, broken tests and obsolete tests. What we've come between the Abbott Laboratories where you have the five minute-- did they test you today?

PHIL MURPHY: They did test me.

DONALD TRUMP: Really?

PHIL MURPHY: I've been--

DONALD TRUMP: Now, I feel better.

PHIL MURPHY: Yeah, yeah, yeah.

[CHUCKLING]

I'm negative.

DONALD TRUMP: You did the-- you did the five minute-- the Abbott test?

PHIL MURPHY: I did the quick turnaround.

DONALD TRUMP: It's so good.

PHIL MURPHY: I feel like a new man.

DONALD TRUMP: That's a brand-- you know what? That's a brand new test. That didn't exist eight weeks ago. And now, it's like the rage. Everybody wants that test. No, I think we've done-- I think we've done a really great job.

JIM ACOSTA: But the Obama administration-- people from the Obama administration would disagree on your assessment that the cupboards were bare. They said that there was equipment--

DONALD TRUMP: I know, Jim.

JIM ACOSTA: [INAUDIBLE].

DONALD TRUMP: Let me just tell you. [INAUDIBLE]

JIM ACOSTA: You say broken tests. It's a new virus. So how could the test be broken--

DONALD TRUMP: We had a broken--

JIM ACOSTA: --when we needed a new test?

DONALD TRUMP: Jim, we had broken tests. We had tests that were obsolete. We had tests didn't take care of people. But here's what's very important. If you take a look at the swine flu, H1N1, or as Joe Biden would say, N1H1, but it's actually wrong-- he didn't even know the name-- OK, H1N1, the swine flu, the Obama administration was a disaster. And they did polling on how did they do. And their polls were so negative, so bad, they did a very poor job.

And they did a poor job on a lot of things. They did a poor job in our military. They did a poor job on our ammunition. When I got here, we had no ammunition. Just like we had no ammunition, we had very little medical, too. So I think when you ask, how did we do-- and I have to say it because the news is so fake and so corrupt-- I think we did a spectacular job. I'm not even referring to me. I'm referring to all of these people, including your people, who have been working with my people--

PHIL MURPHY: You bet.

DONALD TRUMP: --so closely.

PHIL MURPHY: You bet.

DONALD TRUMP: But the federal government has done a spectacular job, to a point where we're building, now-- we're going to have thousands and thousands of ventilators. And we're helping other countries.

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