(CNSNews.com) - House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D.-Calif.) said on C-SPAN’s “Washington Journal” on Friday that President Donald Trump has “presided over the worst economic disaster-slash-health disaster in our country’s history.”
Pelosi made the remark when C-SPAN’s Steve Scully asked for her reaction to the April employment report, which was released Friday morning.
“When you saw the unemployment report–the highest unemployment rate since the Great Depression--what was your reaction?” Scully asked.
“Well, it was one of complete sorrow,” said Pelosi.
“We have heartbreak over the loss of lives we've experienced in our country and so many people affected by the virus, more than a quarter million people,” she said. “And over 70,000, I guess it is now, that have died.
“But the livelihood issue is something that is, just, so depressing really. Depressing,” she said.
“And I do believe that this President has presided over the worst economic disaster-slash-health disaster in our country’s history,” she said.
“I think the road back is to turn a page on it all,” Pelosi said. “Let us start fresh.”
Here is a transcript of the part of Pelosi’s interview on C-SPAN where she talked about the April employment report:
Steve Scully: “Let me turn to some of the news this morning. When you saw the unemployment report – the highest unemployment rate since the Great Depression, what was your reaction?"
Nancy Pelosi: “Well, it was one of complete sorrow. We have heartbreak over the loss of lives we've experienced in our country and so many people affected by the virus, more than a quarter million people. And over 70,000, I guess it is now, that have died. But the livelihood issue is something that is, just, so depressing really. Depressing. And I do believe that this President has presided over the worst economic disaster/health disaster in our country’s history.
I think the road back is to turn a page on it all. Let us start fresh. Testing, treating, and tracing and get the magnitude of the challenge we have in terms of the number of people infected and have treatment for them. Then make sure we have the ability to produce the therapies and the vaccines and the capability to inject with vials and syringes and the rest so we are not left just standing there when, if we have a cure or a vaccine. ‘Oh, we weren’t ready because we didn’t have the’–Let’s be ready.
“So, what we want to do is what we’ll do with our bill, in the CARES 2 package, which is to honor our heroes: our health care providers, our first responders, our teachers, transit workers, garbage collectors–all those people who are making our lives function, many of them risking their own lives to save lives. And now, because of what is happening, they may lose their job. So, we want to help state and local governments to be able to retain these workers. They are our heroes. So, honor our heroes.
“Secondly, testing, testing, testing to open the door to our economy.
“And third, money in the pockets of the American people. Whether it is Unemployment Insurance, direct payments, PPP, the loan program and other initiatives. Did I say direct payments, too? Did I say it twice? That is really important.
“We built on other bills that we have passed, which all had bipartisan support, state and local, testing, direct payments. I would hope we could overcome some of the difficulties we have. The Republicans do not seem interested in doing food stamps, SNAP, what we call the SNAP program. I hope we can overcome that. But otherwise – and we've tried to get that in a number of bills unsuccessfully, but I think the American people are well aware of the need for us to do more in that regard, so I am optimistic. But we will move forward in a big way, because we have a big challenge to our country.”