WASHINGTON, D.C.— Republican Whip Steve Scalise (R-La.) spoke on the House on Wednesday ripping into House Democrats for pushing their “No Ban Act” in the middle of a global pandemic. President Trump has strengthened our borders in several ways that Democrats want to tear down. Border security is national security, border security is economic security, and border security is health security. COVID-19 originated in China, not America.
The President of the United States must first and foremost be able to protect the American people. Democrats’ “No Ban Act” makes it harder for President Trump to protect the American people in the middle of a global pandemic and should never have been brought up for a vote on the House floor.
“Madam Speaker, I rise in strong opposition to this bill and when you think about where we are as a country, we’re in the middle of a global pandemic and at the beginning of this, after China lied — and let’s be very clear, China lied not only to the United States but to the entire world about this disease that started in Wuhan — and what they did while they were lying [was] they corrupted the World Health Organization, the entity that typically we all would look to for guidance.
“And WHO literally was regurgitating the Chinese Communist Party’s talking points, saying it wasn’t spread from human to human contact — which was a lie. And we now have evidence to show that they manipulated and deceived the rest of the world.
“While [the Chinese] were doing that, Madam Speaker, they were hoarding PPE. They were not only buying it up around the world, they make most of it in China. We need to change that, by the way, we should be spending our time here on the House floor not limiting the President’s ability to keep Americans safe, which fortunately President Trump was able to do. He did [it] effectively, properly. He stopped flights from coming in [from] China when we knew the disease was coming from China for goodness sake.
“Why would you want to stop the President from being able to keep Americans safe? What we should be spending our time on right now, Madam Speaker, is bringing more manufacturing back to America, so we don’t need to rely on China. Because they told even American companies like 3M that were making PPE, ‘You can’t ship it back to the United States.’ When our nurses and doctors needed it. So President Trump said we’re going to use the Defense Production Act. We’re going to start making more of that here in America — we need to put incentives to bring more of that back from China so we’re not relying on them [for PPE]. But no, we’re not spending our time on that today.
“Madam Speaker, we’re spending our time with this bill that would limit it and make it more difficult for the President of the United States, any president — just because some people don’t like this president — they’re going to make it harder for any president to keep Americans safe, whether it’s from terrorists abroad or whether it’s for health pandemics that might break out again in the future. This is lunacy. That we would be trying to make it harder for a president to keep Americans safe. Thank goodness President Trump used his executive powers to act like he did to stop the disease from spreading more into this country — he saved thousands of lives.
“If China wouldn’t have lied and we had a few more weeks, there’s data that shows scientifically that tens of thousands of lives would have been saved in America. But at least the President was able to act when he had the proper information. I know people like Joe Biden said it was ‘xenophobic’, for goodness sake — criticized the President stopping people from coming in from the place where the disease started and others criticized him for doing it as well. But it was the right thing to do.
“I’m glad he took that action. The last thing we need to be doing in the middle of this pandemic is making it harder for the President to keep Americans safe. I urge everybody to vote no on this bill and I yield back the balance of my time.”