Backlash Erupts After Trump Appoints VP to Lead Coronavirus Outbreak Response: ‘Pence’s Incompetence Is Literally a Case Study’

President Donald Trump’s decision to task Mike Pence with heading up the federal government’s coronavirus response triggered an immediate backlash as critics noted the vice president’s record of doubting scientific evidence and his role in exacerbating an HIV outbreak in Indiana while he was governor.

Trump said Pence has “a certain talent for this” and specifically cited the “Indiana model” in the Wednesday evening press conference where he named his VP to run the coronavirus response. But as this extensive New York Times report detailed in 2016, the staunch conservative Pence’s health policies helped ignite a massive public health crisis in his state when he shut down a needle exchange program that had severely curtailed the spread of HIV. Virus infection
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