Trump-hating coach of the San Antonio Spurs Gregg Popovich blasted his favorite political target again Friday. This time his criticism concerned President Donald Trump's handling of the coronavirus, and for the second time he called the commander in chief a "coward."
Popovich, who once previously called Trump a "soulless coward," referenced the president's remarks from a meeting with airline CEOs in the White House in regard to testing related to the coronavirus outbreak. Trump stated:
"The Obama administration made a decision on testing that turned out to be very detrimental to what we're doing. We undid that decision a few days ago so that the testing can take place in a much more accurate and rapid fashion. That was a decision we disagreed with. I don't think we would have made it, but for some reason it was made."
Vice President Mike Pence explained that President Obama insisted on federal jurisdiction via FDA medical testing, but President Trump instituted a change allowing states the authority to conduct tests for the coronavirus in state labs. Dr. Robert Redfield, director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, explained that Obama's big government regulations bottlenecked the process and slowed the ability of university and state labs to conduct tests.
Newsweek Fellow Eddy Rodriguez explained how Popovich reacted to this change:
"It was our president blaming Barack Obama for the fact we don't have the kits we need right now. Seriously, I think he thinks Barack Obama tripped [1984 U.S. Olympian and 3,000-meter runner] Mary Decker."
Mary Decker Slaney was an American track and field star who tripped and fell during the running of the women's 3,000 meters in the 1984 Olympics. She was running in the inside lane near rival Zola Budd when the two came into contact with each other and Slaney went down with a leg injury and was unable to finish the race. For years people argued who was at fault.
Popovich, whose Spurs team sits in 12th place out of 15 Western Conference teams with a woeful 26-35 record, wouldn't be getting any ink this season if not for an attack on the president. He pressed on with his anti-Trump tirade:
"Seriously, so you know if it affects him personally in a financial or political way and it's positive, he'll tout about it and he'll brag about it forever. But if it goes against him whether it's a person or an organization, he'll go after it. We all know why: Because he's a coward."
Rather than recognizing Trump's cutting of red tape and allowing for the expediting of testing, the petty, vindictive Popovich maintained his full-court hate press on the current president.
Rodrigues writes, "Meanwhile, Popovich, a previous critic of the president, also lauded NBA players for their refusal to attend the White House after winning a championship, a long-held sports tradition." Popovich said:
"Players made their feelings known not going to the White House. There's a reason for that, and it's not just being flippant or disrespectful. Weak people who are basically demagogues at heart make those kinds of arguments. If you protest something then you're disloyal, you're unpatriotic."
Newsweek at least recognized what Assistant Secretary for Health Dr. Brett Giroir confirmed in a Saturday email. "Testing capacity is ramping up substantially, with 1.5 million tests produced last week. 1.1 million have been shipped, and 400,000 are ready to ship – likely on Monday – to fill incoming orders. We expect approximately 4 million additional tests to be produced next week."
Ever the hypocrite, Popovich refuses to recognize how the administration is unshackling health authorities from federal bureaucracy and ramping up testing ... because it goes against how it affects him and his political bias personally.