During the rally, President Trump touted his success during the pandemic, saying he saved hundreds of thousands of lives. Wochit
Sisolak says Trump’s call to slow down testing was ‘not helpful’
Gov. Steve Sisolak is firing back after President Donald Trump said he wanted to slow down testing to fend off spikes in the number of reported coronavirus cases.
Sisolak, who joined other governors on a Monday morning phone call with Vice President Mike Pence, said in a statement that testing is a critical component of Nevada’s COVID recovery plan and that the Silver State has made great strides toward making tests available to all residents.
Sisolak told Pence Nevada’s recent bump in cases was a product not merely of more testing, but also the result of fewer people wearing masks and following social distancing protocols, according to a transcript of the call released by the governor’s office.
“The president’s comments on Saturday night as related to his order to slow down the testing is certainly not helpful,” Sisolak said. “We are doing everything we can in Nevada to increase our testing, to increase the availability of the testing and our cases have gone up … So if we could all get on the same page and get a commitment that there is not a federal mandate to slow down testing I think it would be extremely helpful.”
Trump said at a Saturday night campaign rally in Tulsa, Oklahoma that increased coronavirus testing leads to an increased tally of cases, calling expanded testing a “double-edged sword.”
The White House later said those remarks were “tongue in cheek.”
Nevada is now home to more than 13,500 confirmed coronavirus cases and 489 deaths. Officials have administered around 280,000 tests for the deadly disease.
James DeHaven is the politics reporter for the Reno Gazette Journal. He covers campaigns, the Nevada Legislature and everything in between. Support his work by subscribing to RGJ.com right here.
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