“There is ongoing discussion about the GM fan deal and it is currently under discussion,” said the official.
Minutes later, Trump asked GM to reopen its recently closed auto plant in Lordstown, Ohio to start producing fans.
“General Motors MUST immediately open its stupidly abandoned plant in Lordstown, Ohio or another plant, and now start making fans !!!!!!” he tweeted. “FORD, let’s go with fans, fast !!!!!! @General Motors @Ford”
Congressional Democrats and governors of countries affected by the virus have criticized the Trump administration for not using the Defense Production Act to instruct companies to make fans earlier. Trump indicated minutes later that he could use this emergency agency and tweeted that “Invoke ‘P’ Defense Production Act!”
After the tweetstorm, Senator Chris Murphy (D-Conn.), In whose state the number of Covid-19 diagnoses is increasing rapidly, urged Trump to “stop whining and tweeting and acting”.
“The president complained this morning about GM’s apparent reversal in the number of ventilators produced by GM. It doesn’t have to be GM’s,” Murphy told reporters, noting that Trump can call the data protection agency and force them to be manufactured. “Today we are in a Lord of the Flies environment where every hospital and every state compete.”
Both GM and Ford have partnered with medical device suppliers to manufacture ventilators for the coronavirus outbreak. This week, however, they told POLITICO that their plans were still in their infancy. After Trump’s tweets, GM made a statement that Ventec will produce fans at its Kokomo, Indiana facility. However, the first systems will not be available until April.
“Depending on the requirements of the federal government, Ventec and GM are ready to deliver the first ventilators next month and to achieve a production capacity of more than 10,000 ventilators for intensive care per month with the infrastructure and the ability to further scale,” it says Read the explanation.