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Pierce County Readiness Center
Tacoma, Washington

4:54 P.M. PST

GOVERNOR INSLEE:  Mr. Vice President, thanks for being here.  We appreciate you being here.  You’ve already done some things for our state, and we appreciate you.  You brought an excellent team.  They’ve already done some good things today.


GOVERNOR INSLEE:  So, thank you.  I just want to introduce you to a couple people you may not have met: Mayor Durkan, of Seattle, who is joining us, who is going to have the best hockey franchise here shortly; King County Vice Chair of the Council, Reagan Dunn; and Bruce Dammeier, who is a Pierce County Executive.

And so we are very appreciative of you being here, and I hope you have just a couple comments for the group here.

THE VICE PRESIDENT:  I do.  Thank you, Governor Inslee, and thank you for greeting us.  And I want to thank — I just want to say thank you to your whole team here in the State of Washington.
The American people have watched with great concern as the coronavirus has taken hold in this community.  Particularly, we think of the tragic loss of life.  But the response of the State of Washington, of your Health Department, the response by the city of Seattle, Madam Mayor, and — has really inspired the country.  And the President wanted me to be here today just to make it crystal clear that we’re with you.  We’re here to help.

I’m also grateful to be joined by so many members of the Washington delegation to our nation’s capital, and I want to thank them for the swift and bipartisan efforts in moving the spending bill that the President will be signing tomorrow.  It passed the Senate this afternoon.  I think it represents the very best of — of Washington, D.C. — coming together, putting the health and wellbeing of the American people first.  And it will make nearly $8 billion available to not only federal agencies, but — as you and I have discussed, Governor Inslee, it’ll make resources available to state and local efforts as we confront the coronavirus as a nation.

So I look forward to our discussion and learning more about how our team at the White House Task Force and all of our agencies can more effectively come alongside and support the efforts all across the Seattle area and here in the State of Washington.

And finally, Governor Inslee, thank you for your leadership in this moment in the life of your state.  You and I served together for many years in Washington, D.C., but to see you bringing your experience serving in HHS early in your career, it’s — Washington State is setting a great example as states around the nation continue to experience the advent of the coronavirus in their communities.

We’re going to continue to look to the example that you’ve set here and your health department has set here, and I want to thank you very much for your leadership.



4:57 P.M. PST