President Biden has missed every weekly Covid-19 call with governors since taking office.
Anonymous staffers note that the time, 11AM, is difficult for the president as his medication takes time to become effective.
Every Tuesday, usually at 11 a.m. EST, all 50 governors dial in to the same conference call to coordinate federal and state responses to the coronavirus crisis.
But Biden is not here.
The Trump White House hosted a total of 40 COVID conference calls. Pence led 39 of them, according to that administration’s final COVID report first obtained by RCP (1). Trump participated in eight.
Things are different now, said Pete Ricketts.
“President Biden hasn’t been on any of them,” the Nebraska governor told RCP, “and Vice President Harris has only been on one, but that was for about five minutes and she didn’t take any questions.”
“It’s been a real frustration, I think it’s safe to say, for all 50 governors,” New Hampshire’s Chris Sununu told RealClearPolitics.
Ricketts complains that
“high-level access to the decision-makers who can move the bureaucracy” is now missing, adding that “It really is not the type of bipartisan partnership that the president promised when he came into office in his inaugural address. It really is much more of a top-down, we-are-going-to-do-what-we-are-going-to-do thought process.”
Some governors have concerns.
“Communication is not the administration’s strong point, but it’s still important. Transparency is the foundation of public trust, especially during a crisis,” New Hampshire’s Chris Sununu said.
To me, it looks like Biden is doing nothing, the governors are doing everything, but the media make sure Biden is receiving all the credit.