They’re being told not to send stuff to Michigan

Trump is withholding assistance from governors who don’t kiss his ass.

In case you missed it, El Caudillo del Mar-a-Lago went on teevee with Sean Hannity on Thursday night and explained in rather precise detail how his pandemic shakedown is going to work. For example, he is not happy with Gretchen Whitmer, the Democratic governor of the state of Michigan, where Detroit has become a hot zone in which hospitals are overwhelmed and already preparing contingency plans to triage patients in order to ration things like ventilators. In several appearances addressing the crisis in her state, Whitmer has been critical of the federal response—or lack thereof—to the pandemic. The president* told Hannity:

“She is a new governor, and it’s not been pleasant … “We’ve had a big problem with the young — a woman governor. You know who I’m talking about — from Michigan. We don’t like to see the complaints…She doesn’t get it done, and we send her a lot. Now, she wants a declaration of emergency, and, you know, we’ll have to make a decision on that. But Michigan is a very important state. I love the people of Michigan.”

Whitmer, meanwhile, in an interview with WWJ Newsradio in Detroit, explained what being on the business end of the pandemic shakedown was like.

“What I’ve gotten back is that vendors with whom we’ve procured contracts — They’re being told not to send stuff to Michigan,” Whitmer said live on air. “It’s really concerning, I reached out to the White House last night and asked for a phone call with the president, ironically at the time this stuff was going on.”

So that’s fine. Trump is murdering people in Michigan for the sake of his own vanity, so that’s nothing to worry about.

On Wednesday, of course, talking to another Fox News meat puppet, Trump made the general outlines of the shakedown quite plain. From Business Insider:

“It’s a two-way street,” Trump said of his discussions with governors about providing their states with federal aid. “They have to treat us well also. They can’t say, ‘Oh gee, we should get this, we should get that.’ We’re doing a great job.” Trump used New York an example of how the federal government had put forward resources to support states. “We’re literally building hospitals and medical centers,” he said. “And then I hear that there’s a problem with ventilators — well, we sent them ventilators, and they could have had 15 or 16,000, all they had to do was order them two years ago. But they decided not to do it. They can’t blame us for that.”

They can’t say “we should get this”? Why not? They’re not saying it to Donald Trump the crooked hotel owner, they’re saying it to the federal government of a large rich country. Of course they can say “we should get [i.e. we need] this.” Presidents aren’t supposed to tell governors “we won’t give you what you need unless you kiss our ring.”

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