Press Briefing by Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany - September 22, 2020 | Beaufort County Now | Nancy Pelosi, Chuck Schumer, and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez have officially shown their blatant disregard for the United States Constitution. | President Donald J. Trump, dnlds wht hs, Constitution, Nancy Pelosi

Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19)

Press Briefing by Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany - September 22, 2020

    And then, how concerned is this White House that this growing rift between the world's two largest economies is going to hurt the efforts to combat coronavirus?

    MS. MCENANY: Let me just say, nothing has hurt the efforts to combat the coronavirus more than -

    Q The global efforts.

    MS. MCENANY: - more than China concealing information about COVID-19 from the very beginning. What China did was inexcusable: In partnership with the WHO, hid critical information about transmission of COVID from us, about the severity of COVID - not just from us, but from the world.

    There is no bigger bully than China when it comes to COVID, and that's pretty clear. And just look at what happened at the WHO.

    Yes.

    Q Can I just have one quick follow-up? With regard to the intelligence around the poisoning of the Russian opposition leader, the President said, "We'll talk about that another time." I'm just trying to get a sense of: Has the President reviewed the German assessment? Is he rejecting that assessment that he was indeed poisoned?

    MS. MCENANY: No, the United States, as president of the G7, and joined by our G7 partners, has condemned in the strongest possible terms the confirmed poisoning.

    And Germany briefed the G7 on clinical and toxilogical [sic] findings by medical experts. And a specialized Germ- - German armed forces laboratory determined that Mr. Navalny was the victim of an attack with a chemical nerve agent, a substance developed by Russia. And any use of chemical weapons - anywhere, anytime, by anyone, under any circumstance - is unacceptable.

    Chanel.

    Q So what would the U.S. response be then?

    MS. MCENANY: I - again, I've told you, so far, that the United States has condemned it, along with G7. And rest assured there's been no one tougher on Russia than this country. You've seen what we've done with sanctions, in expelling diplomats, among other actions.

    Yes, Chanel.

    Q Kayleigh, expanding on the last couple of questions about the U.N. speech, the President does get China pretty hard, specifically on China's slave labor practices and ethnic cleansing. But then, interestingly, he dives into their environmental record. "China dumps millions and millions of tons of plastic and trash into the oceans, overfishes other country's waters, destroys vast swaths of coral reefs, and emits more toxic mercury into the atmosphere than any country anywhere in the world." How responsive have the United States' allies been to this message from the President and on confronting China on these fronts in particular?

    MS. MCENANY: Yeah, I would say the world is unified in condemning some of the human rights violations by China. And also, I would note, just on the issue of CO2 emissions, there's no bigger emitter than China itself.

    Charlotte.

    Q Thank you, Kayleigh. A Heritage Foundation report has discovered a financial link between an organization linked to Black Lives Matter and a pro-Chinese Beijing group. Is that something that the White House would investigate? And is that something you're concerned about?

    MS. MCENANY: So I haven't seen that particular reporting. But just on the note of some of the violence that we've been seeing, I would just point out this New York Times article that came out:

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    "Terrance Moses was watching protesters against police brutality march down his quiet residential street one recent evening when some in the group of a few hundred suddenly stopped and started yelling.

    Mr. Moses was initially not sure what the protesters were upset about, but as he got closer, he saw it: [It was] his neighbor [who] had an American flag on display.

    'It went from a peaceful march, calling out the names, to all of a sudden, bang, 'How dare you fly the American flag,' said Mr. Moses, who is Black and runs a nonprofit group in the Portland, Oregon, area. 'They said, "Take it down. They wouldn't leave. They said they're going to come back and burn down the House.'

    Mr. Moses and others blocked the demonstrators and told them to leave."


    Mr. Moses said, "We don't go around terrorizing folks to try and force them to do something they don't want to do," who runs a nonprofit group that provides support for local homelessness people. He said, "I'm a veteran. I'm for these liberties."

    It is shameful the violence we've seen in our cities that is now spilling into suburbs across the country. And good work and good reporting by the New York Times on that.

    Now I'd like to invite Lieutenant General Keith Kellogg to the podium to discuss a disgruntled former detailee. General Kellogg is a three-star general, a veteran of the Vietnam War and Operation Desert Storm. General Kellogg has been supporting President Trump from the beginning and has been by the President's side for major foreign policy decisions.

    General Kellogg, please.

    LIEUTANANT GENERAL KELLOGG: Thanks, Kayleigh. Good afternoon. I'm Keith Kellogg. Olivia Troye worked for me. I fired her.

    The reason I fired her was her performance had started to drop after six months working on the task force as a backbencher. She was responsible for coordinating meetings, bringing people together. And when the performance level dropped off, I went to the Vice President of the United States and recommended she leave.

    I'm the one that escorted her off the compound. What she has said, I have never heard. That's never happened. And I've been to every single meeting of the task force. I've been with the President and the Vice President through every meeting.

    What bothers me about what Olivia said is, by insinuation, the disparagement of the task force, the Vice President, and the President of the United States. When you look at what the task force has done, we are now facing the worst pandemic we have seen in over 100 years, and we're fighting through it.

    We are this close to a vaccine that will work. We are finally fighting through it, and we're developing some opportunities to make sure the American people are protected as we go forward.

    And when we've had the doctors that are out there, when the comments she has made - when you looked at the Dr. Faucis, Dr. Birx, and Redfield, Stephen Hahn, Dr. Giroir - all of these doctors who have worked exceptionally hard for the American people.

    The President has made some critical decisions all the way along the line. Tough decisions. He made a decision on the China travel ban when we had less than a dozen known cases here in the United States. He was the one who set up the air bridge, working with commercial companies, so we would develop and bring in PPE in 27 hours instead of 27 days. He's the one who went to companies like 3M, so we could ra- - more rapidly manufacture the N95 masks going forward. He's the one who drove all those efforts.

    And I heard the comments made about the people we have lost. Do not think for a minute, that that has not bothered us; it does. Because we know, on the task force: Several of those people, scores of those people died without relatives because they couldn't get in because of COVID. We know that. Scores of them died on ventilators when they're under sedition [sic] - sedation, because they didn't have an opportunity to see their loved ones. That bothers us every single day; don't think it doesn't. And it bothers the President.

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    And the President has been very confident that we're going to get to a solution. You want a President, you want a leader that displays confidence that we have something going forward, that we're going to win and beat this virus. And that's what he's done all the way along the line.

    I'm very proud of the President of the United States. I'm very proud of the Vice President of the United States. I'm very proud of the task force and the work it's done. I am not proud of Olivia Troye.

    Q So, General -

    Q General Kellogg, should the President be having these big rallies? Should the President be having these big rallies when there's a pandemic going on?

    MS. MCENANY: Thank you, Lieutenant General. We appreciate you doing that - that. What we have here, with this former disgruntled detailee and with Miles Taylor as well - these are not profiles in courage, but these are profiles in cowardice.

    Less than two months ago, now disgruntled former detailee, Olivia Troye, proudly declared that she was serving in the Trump administration, and it had been, quote, "the honor of [her] life." Troye said, quote, "I have witnessed firsthand how dedicated and committed all of you have been to doing the right thing." She wrote that just about a month and a half ago.

    Troye failed to speak up, and she struggled to keep up because she was constantly complaining about how exhausted and overwhelmed she was coordinating conference calls and scheduling meetings. Troye's detail was cut short, and now she's cutting commercials for a fringe club of, quote, "Never Trumpers" who are desperate for relevancy. And the price of admission to this club is fabricated smears and flat-out lies against President Trump.

    Troye joins the similarly irrelevant Miles Taylor, CNN's latest contributor. Taylor proudly posed for a photo with the President, smiling ear to ear. Taylor wrote that, quote, "It was the honor of [his] lifetime to serve as DHS Chief of Staff." But Miles couldn't go the distance. Those who knew Miles during his short time in the administration knew he could not get results.

    After he left, DHS actually got the results in securing the border, building the border wall, and more. Desperate to please his new Silicon Valley friends, Miles made up lies against President Trump to fit in. He can now rest easy at Google, having earned his anti-Trump credentials and the approval of his big-tech peers.

    Neither of these individuals knew the President, but they are certainly tried to profit - trying to profit off of their ti- - off of their time here in the White House. Flat-out lies.

    And thank you, General Kellogg, for setting the record straight. Thank you.

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