“This president, I have a new name for him, Mr. Make Matters Worse,” Pelosi said on CBS’ “Face the Nation” when discussing the president’s response to the novel coronavirus pandemic.
Pelosi went on to slam Trump for his past statements saying that the virus will go away on its own “like a miracle” and other controversial comments the president has made during the public health crisis.
“He has made matters worse from the start -- delay, denial, it’s a hoax, it’ll go away magically, it’s a miracle, and all the rest -- and we’re in this situation,” she said.
Pelosi’s name-calling echoes a tactic Trump has used throughout his time in politics. Trump first started using nicknames during his time as a GOP presidential primary hopeful – “Lyin’ Ted” Cruz and “low energy” Jeb Bush, for example – and has continued it to this day as he refers to the presumptive 2020 Democratic presidential nominee as “Sleepy” Joe Biden.
Even as Pelosi was bestowing her own nickname on Trump, the president was name-calling the House speaker on Twitter.
“Crazy Nancy Pelosi said I made a mistake when I banned people from infected China from entering the U.S. in January,” Trump said, using a term for Pelosi he frequently employs against Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders. “Tens of thousands of lives were saved, as she danced in the Streets of Chinatown (SF) in late February.”
During her interview on Sunday, Pelosi also criticized Trump for his insistence that schools should reopen despite the recent surges in coronavirus cases across the country.
“The best way to send our children to school is to fund it,” she said, “That takes money, that’s in the HEROES Act.”
The HEROES Act is a piece of coronavirus relief legislation passed by the House in May.
Trump said last Thursday that schools across the country should reopen amid the coronavirus pandemic as long as they can practice good hygiene and social distancing -- adding that the White House is asking Congress to pledge $105 billion to schools as part of next coronavirus stimulus bill.
The president, who has for weeks been pressuring schools to reopen and “get our economy going,” added during a coronavirus briefing at the White House that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) will release new guidelines to ensure the safe reopening of schools.
CDC Director Dr. Robert Redfield has recently emphasized that his agency’s guidelines were only recommendations, and he urged schools to find ways to reopen while minimizing the spread of COVID-19.
"Nothing would cause me greater sadness than to see any school district or school use our guidance as a reason not to reopen,” Redfield said.