Politics

President Trump may restore WHO funding, with terms

Tucker Carlson has the info.

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“Tucker Carlson Tonight” broadcasted a Friday night exclusive report that makes it clear that the president is a canny operator. After laying strong criticism at the doorstep of the World Health Organization (WHO) and suspending funding, the Trump administration may be restoring the funds. The catch? The amount will be decreased by 90% to keep it in line with the Chinese contribution.

Fox News‘ Tucker Carlson: “According to a five-page draft letter to WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus on Friday, the administration will ‘agree to pay up to what China pays in assessed contributions’ to the WHO… We’re told the president supposedly has agreed to sign the letter if he hasn’t already. It’d be interesting to know who convinced him to do that… A senior administration official confirmed that Trump has agreed to the plan set out in the draft letter.”

The Trump letter to the WHO: “Despite [its] shortcomings, I believe that the WHO still has tremendous potential, and want to see the WHO live up to this potential, particularly now during this global crisis. That is why I’ve decided the United States will continue to partner and work with the WHO… China owes a massive debt to the entire world, and it can start with paying its fair share to the WHO… If China increases its funding to the WHO, we will consider matching those increases.”

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Past U.S. funding of the WHO was over $400 million annually. If the U.S. does match the Chinese number, the new funding will be about one-tenth of that amount, or $40 million.

The letter starts by noting that the U.S. review of the WHO “has confirmed many of the concerns I [Trump] raised last month and identified others.” It calls for “commonsense reforms of the WHO,” and “a universal review mechanism to publicly report on member state compliance with International Health Regulations…including timely and effective declarations of Public Health Emergencies of International Concern.” It concludes with, “The Director-General must be ‘insulated from political pressure in relation to public health decisions and participation in WHO meetings’ and demands ‘a fully independent assessment of the origin of this virus and the WHO COVID-19 response.'”

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Carlson responded, saying, “Dr. Tedros Adhanom has thoroughly disgraced himself and his organization for four years, but particularly throughout this virus epidemic. Remember, the World Health Organization attacked travel restrictions…as unnecessary and, needless to say, racist. They then spread the baldest kind of Chinese propaganda, [saying] the virus could not spread person-to-person. That killed people.”

Dr. Marc Siegel, a regular Carlson guest, noted Tedros’ praise of Beijing’s handling of the outbreak and appealed to President Trump: “Please don’t sign anything that restores funding to the World Health Organization before there’s a huge overhaul of the World Health Organization.”

The president is amusingly having it both ways here. He cuts off the critics who damned him for stiffing the WHO in the middle of a global pandemic. However, if they still now lambaste him they will have to explain why we should pay more than the Chinese. If they attempt that, even with nuance, they leave themselves wide open to charges of being Chicom sycophants. Well played, Mr. President.

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