Remarks by President Trump at Owens & Minor, Inc. Distribution Center | Beaufort County Now

Remarks by President Trump at Owens & Minor, Inc. Distribution Center president, donald trump, dnlds wht hs, remarks, owens & minor inc., distribution center, may 15, 2020
Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19)

Remarks by President Trump at Owens & Minor, Inc. Distribution Center

Press Release:

Owens & Minor, Inc. Distribution Center  •  Allentown, PA  •  May 14  •  2:56 P.M. EDT

    THE PRESIDENT: Thank you very much. Thank you. Thank you. Oh, that social distancing. Look at you people all spread out, six feet. That's pretty impressive. But we like it the old way a little bit better, don't we?

    AUDIENCE: Yeah!

    THE PRESIDENT: And we'll be back. We'll be back to that soon, I think. I really believe it. And we were received by thousands and thousands of people coming in. And they came in from all over and all the way from the airport to here. It was really something special. So it was really great.

    Sit down. Let's have a little fun, and we'll talk, and then we'll talk about the business and the great job that you're doing. And we really appreciate you being here. Thank you very much. I'm honored.

    In the heart of the Lehigh Valley - now, just so you know, I have brother who is a great brother. Passed away a long time ago. Fred. And he went to Lehigh University. I've been up here many times actually. And I gave a commencement address years ago at Lehigh University. It's a great school. But whenever I think of this area, I think about my brother.

    But I really am honored to be with the extraordinary workers of Allentown, Pennsylvania. Every day you prove that American workers are truly the best in the world, and that's what they are. And we're showing that now. We're starting to make more and more product in the United States.

    I was with some of your representatives. Associates, they call themselves. I don't know - I assume if they're associates, you're all making the same money. I hope so. (Laughter.) They call themselves associates. Sounds nice, right? More and more I see that. But it's good. And they're good, and they're doing a great job, frankly.

    But they're talking about so much of the product now is made in the USA, whereas in the past, it wasn't. It wasn't. But they were talking about 90 percent - 80 to 90 percent is made - of what you distribute is now made in the USA, and that's taken a long while for us to get it. I started that right from the beginning. It's probably one of the major reasons that I'm here. It's called "America First." We want America first. We love the world. We want America first.

    Today we're announcing a groundbreaking initiative to replenish and modernize our Strategic National Stockpile. The cupboards were bare. You've heard me say it a lot. When we came into this administration, those cupboards were bare.

    I've come to this major medical supply distribution hub because the workers here at Owens & Minor have a critical role in this national effort. And it's a critical role that you've fulfilled incredibly well, or I wouldn't be here. I would have found someplace else. (Laughter.)

    And thank you for those beautiful hats. I appreciate it. Thank you. Thank you very much. (Applause.)

    Thank you very much.

    From the moment this terrible virus reached our shores, each of you has worked relentlessly to get the vital supplies to our healthcare warriors. And they are warriors, aren't they? When you see them going into those hospitals and they're putting the stuff that you deliver. But they're wrapping themselves, and the doors are opening, and they're going through the doors, and they're not even ready to go through those doors. They probably shouldn't. But they can't get there fast enough.

    And they're running into death just like soldiers run into bullets, in a true sense. I see that with the doctors and the nurses and so many of the people that go into those hospitals. It's incredible to see. It's a beautiful thing to see. But I really call them "warriors." We're all warriors; everyone in our country is a warrior. We have to be because of what happened. And it should have never happened. It should have been stopped at the source.

    But each of you has worked relentlessly to get those supplies to our healthcare warriors and all across the hospitals, and specifically for this plant, in New York, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania.


    As you know, the pandemic has inflicted profound hardship, especially in the areas that you serve. Within one heartbeat, America grieves for every life and every family, all of those that have been lost and all over the world. A hundred and eighty-six as of this morning - 186 countries. What a horrible shame.

    And we thank God for the courage of those on the frontlines. And you make it possible for them.

    Just as the men and women of Allentown have done in every generation - I know it well - the workers at this facility have answered the call in America's hour of need. Many of you are working long before dawn. You get up and you go to work, and long after midnight. I know your hours. I was talking to your people and your representatives. They say, "You wouldn't even..." - I'm saying, "What are the hours?" They said, "You won't even believe it." I said, "But I work those hours too. We all work. We're all working hard."

    You're driving forklifts, staging pallets, packing, picking, loading, and shipping all sorts of things all over these primarily three states. Since February, you have deployed an amazing 1.75 million N95 respirators - and you make them now yourselves - 3.4 million gowns, 80 million gloves, and much more.

    And on behalf of our nation, I want to thank you because you're making America proud. We really do - we thank you very much. Thank you all. Thank you. (Applause.)

    I'm grateful to Owens & Minor president Edward Pesicka, along with your chief operating officer Jeff Jochims.

    We're also joined by Secretary Alex Azar, doing a terrific job. And your statement to the press today was fantastic. He made a very impassioned, strong, powerful statement today.

    FEMA Administrator Pete Gaynor. Pete, thank you very much. Great job. Fantastic job. You're dealing directly. And you and Admiral John Polowczyk. Where's the Admiral? Admiral? Great job. Thank you very much. Are they doing a good job here, Admiral? Huh? Good. When the Admiral says "yes," that means you're doing a good job. (Laughter.)

    And the CEO of the U.S. International Development Finance Corporation, Adam Boehler. Thank you, Adam. Fantastic.

    Every incredible worker here today is part of the greatest mobilization of American society since World War Two. You know that, right? We've done things with generators and ventilators and so many different things. We're making products that nobody ever thought we'd ever need in any mass form.

    Ventilators is the biggest thing. We made plenty of ventilators, which was very little in the country, because most hospitals didn't need very many. And all of a sudden, they said, "We need hundreds of thousands of ventilators. We need the kinds of numbers that you wouldn't believe." And we were mobilized, and with Adam and with the Admiral and with all of these people, and Jared - somewhere, Jared is here.

    What they did is incredible. We brought geniuses in from Silicon Valley. And all of a sudden, within a short period of time, we had 11 plants out making ventilators. And you wouldn't believe what it is. And now we're - we have so many. Every state has more than they need.

    We filled up our stockpile. We have over 10,000 now. And we filled it up. We're ready to go in case anything happens, but I don't think anything will happen where you're going to need any more. And we're now helping other countries with ventilators because nobody can make - you know, you can't make them. They're very tough to make, very expensive. They're - I say it's tougher than making a car. And we make the best ventilator too.


    Read the full transcript HERE.

You can visit a collection of all White House posts by clicking here.


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