White House Senior Adviser Jared Kushner is seeking to offer a moment of clarity on his previous comments about the Trump administration’s coronavirus response being a “success story.”
During an interview with Time magazine on Tuesday, Kushner was asked about that statement. He shared his perspective, explaining the message he initially intended to convey reason with his comments.
“I don’t want those comments to be taken in a way other than to contextualize how much our hearts break for the people who have passed and their families,” Kushner said.
Kushner went on to acknowledge the severity of the pandemic while noting that “the situation could have been a lot worse.”
“We know that it’s a terrible tragedy, and one life [lost], as the President said, is too many,” he said, adding, “But faced with the magnitude of what this pandemic was and what it could have been…the situation could have been a lot worse. So we really worked very, very hard to create a better outcome than could have been otherwise.”
Kushner’s latest interview comes weeks after his previous Fox News interview.
Just days after President Donald Trump praised the United States on testing, Kushner was asked about the administration’s national strategy. He weighed in, agreeing that the Trump administration had risen to the challenge.
“We’re on the other side of the medical aspect of this and I think that we’ve achieved all the different milestones that are needed. So, the federal government rose to the challenge, and this is a great success story,” Kushner said. “And I think that’s what needs to be told.”
See his remarks below:
Jared Kushner, as the US coronavirus death toll surpasses the Vietnam War and approaches 60,000: "This is a great success story, and I think that's really what needs to be told." pic.twitter.com/ax6ok3cYCV— Aaron Rupar (@atrupar) April 29, 2020
Almost immediately after the clip of the interview began circulating on social media, Kushner’s comments were dissected.
Testing capacity remains a hurdle that many governors, state, and local officials are working to improve on as many states begin partially reopening.