* “America was always strong on self-interest, but it has been very generous. That generosity seems to be gone, and that’s bad news for the world.”–Jan Techau, senior fellow at the German Marshall Fund in Berlin.
* “This crisis has exposed the deep fissures and failures in our culture and the incompetence of so many of our federal leaders. And a reckoning must be had; we are already seeing calls for an inquiry akin to the 9/11 commission into why we were so unprepared. … Many Americans are likely to die who could have been protected had the nation been better prepared and better led. Top-down direction is critical.”–Anne-Marie Slaughter, chief executive of New America.
* “There is broad general agreement that small businesses in this country will not be able to survive unless there is extraordinary assistance.”–Florida Sen. Marco Rubio.
* “When the government shut down the economy, it assumed the responsibility of bringing it back.”–Rep. Russ Fulcher, R-Idaho, in the aftermath of the government stepping in with $2 trillion rescue legislation.
* “We are actively monitoring the situation and the possible impact of the crisis on consumer demand. When we can safely resume production, we will.”–General Motors spokesman David Barnass, while announcing that GM would be suspending production at its North American factories indefinitely, laying off 6,500 salaried employees and cutting executive pay.
* “Really, the message is this: that this is a unique situation, it’s not like a typical downturn. The Federal Reserve is working hard to support you now, and our policies will be very important when the recovery does come.”–Fed Reserve Chairman Jerome H. Powell.
* “Philanthropy can’t replace the efforts of national governments on a challenge as massive as the coronavirus pandemic. But it can support and augment those efforts, and help fill in gaps, and that’s what we’re doing.”–Michael Bloomberg.
* “There is hope in the fact that the impressive containment achieved so far in East Asia has been accomplished with a variety of different policies, different degrees of lockdown and distancing, but one major commonality: the wide-spread use of masks.”–Ross Douthat, New York Times.
* “It doesn’t matter that at least half of what (Trump’s) saying is at best wrong and at worst encourages people to do the wrong things. He’s the leader. And the media is basically doing what it did in 2016 and giving the reality-TV star what he wants.”–Bob Kerrey, former Democratic senator and governor of Nebraska.
* “Right now, for the life of me, I don’t know who speaks for Department of Homeland Security.”–Janet Napolitano, former secretary of homeland security under Barack Obama.
* “Polls say Trump’s popularity had edged up a little since the virus struck. The fact remains that, for a wartime commander in chief, he’s unpopular. He is beatable. So is the virus, because America is smarter and better than Trump’s hunches.”–Roger Cohen, New York Times.
* “In this hour of crisis, state officials should do all they can to hold their elections as soon as possible. The legitimacy of the eventual Democratic nominee could depend on it.”–Historian Jon Meacham.
* “Only fools would expect the government to protect them from the spread of this powerful and deadly disease. Isolation is critical.”–Jay Wolfson, a professor at USF’s College of Public Health and an expert on health care policy.
* “(President Donald Trump and Gov. Ron DeSantis) have both shown strong leadership, and Floridians are better off because of their response to this virus. … The media will never give President Trump or Gov. DeSantis a fair shake. But to my eye, they have been working together tirelessly to protect us from this threat.”–Joe Gruters, chairman of the Republican Party of Florida.
* “After all the hard work, we don’t want it to now get seeded as people flee the hot zone.”–Gov. Ron DeSantis, in issuing executive orders that require a 14-day quarantine for travelers newly arriving from the New York area, currently the epicenter of the U.S. coronavirus outbreak.
* “We need to modernize our voting systems to protect voters, and our partnership with the DNC to enroll Floridians in vote-by-mail does just that. If Trump and DeSantis won’t act to protect the vote from a global pandemic, we will.”–Juan Penalosa, the Florida Democratic Party’s executive director, in reference to the FDP and the DNC partnering to launch a massive texting campaign to encourage Floridians to register to vote by mail.
* “As a company that started as a small business 90 years ago, Publix wants to help businesses renting from us survive the economic impact of these unexpected closures.”–Publix spokeswoman Maria Brous, in announcing that Publix was waiving rent for two months to businesses that operate in any of the 282 shopping centers that Publix owns.
* “To alleviate some of your stress during this time of uncertainty, USF is giving you the option to take your spring 2020 semester classes with a satisfactory or unsatisfactory (pass-fail) grade,”–Paul Dosal, USF’s vice president for student success. USF, FSU and UCF are expanding pass-fail grading due to the coronavirus.
* “The reality is this is going to be a long haul.”–Mayor Jane Castor.