Durbin Statement On President Trump Ending United States' Relationship With World Health Organization

SPRINGFIELD – U.S. Senate Democratic Whip Dick Durbin (D-IL) today released the following statement after President Donald Trump announced he would move to terminate the United States’ relationship with the World Health Organization (WHO) amid the COVID-19 global health pandemic and after the death toll in the United States surpassed 100,000 Americans:

“Today’s announcement by President Trump ignores the deadly reality of this pandemic.  The U.S. leads the world in COVID-19 infections and deaths.  For our sake and that of the rest of the world, we cannot afford an arrogant political stunt withdrawing our nation from the global effort to stop the spread of this virus and the discovery of a safe, effective vaccine.”

Durbin is the lead sponsor of a Senate resolution that encourages U.S. engagement with the international community on the COVID-19 response given the Trump Administration’s failure to participate in global summits on vaccines and therapeutics.  Durbin’s resolution is supported by 39 of his Senate colleagues.  Last week, Durbin worked to pass the resolution by unanimous consent, but it was objected to by Senators Jim Risch (R-ID) and Mike Braun (R-IN).

This month, Durbin spoke about the importance of continuing to work with the global community to fight the coronavirus pandemic and support the development of a vaccine.  Durbin spoke about the shortsightedness of the Trump Administration’s refusal to join countries around the world to discuss how to raise funds to research, manufacture, and distribute a possible vaccine and treatments to COVID-19.   Durbin also slammed President Trump’s decision to stop funding the World Health Organization at a time when the world is battling an unprecedented pandemic. Video of Durbin’s remarks on the Senate floor is available here.