KRUSE: So how’s the federal government doing?
ROSE: Nothing would make me happier, nothing, than to see this president utilize all the tools at his disposal to win this war as the commander in chief that he is, and to own that success. And if that success means that we beat Covid and he wins reelection, then so be it. God bless him. Because we have won the greatest battle of the 21st century. But I have not seen his administration assert its authority in the ways that it could. Think back again to the analogy of World War II. We built factories and then mandated that the private sector take them over. We put people to work in terms of wartime jobs. That wasn’t just the patriotic thing to do. That was absolutely vital because people needed work. And we very well might find ourselves in that situation again. Because put yourself in the shoes of 3M. Think about what 3M is thinking. They’re thinking, ‘I don’t know when this demand is going hit, but I don’t think the demand’s going to be there five years from now because there’s going to be a vaccine. So I’m not going to build 10 new factories, which is what I have to do to satisfy the demand for the next 12 months.’ The federal government needs to step in and make sure that those 10 new factories are built, and make sure they’re built in America. Only the federal government can do that.
KRUSE: So what specifically hasn’t President Trump been doing that he should be doing in this regard?
ROSE: Here’s a few things. One: Streamlining who’s in charge. There’s too many task forces going on. Second thing is he needs to assert all of his Defense Production Act authority over the production and dissemination of critical supplies from ventilators to masks to reagents to all of the equipment necessary to test people or the virus. The third thing is I believe that he should be asserting or utilizing the Pentagon supply management acumen for the dissemination of these critical supplies within the country. It is shockingly similar to the dissemination of beans and bullets and bombs. You have to calculate a burn rate. You have to calculate where the supplies are most needed and you have to figure out how to get them there as quickly as possible. The states and cities, especially the ones hardest hit, like New York, should not be asked to spend a dime on this when they’re going through an economic crisis of their own.