Mar 7, 2020 - Health

Trump derides Gov. Jay Inslee as a "snake" while touring CDC

In this image, Trump stands in the middle of a group of men and talks
Trump tours the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta, Georgia, on March 6. Photo: Jim Watson/AFP via Getty Images

President Trump called Washington Gov. Jay Inslee a "snake" on Friday while touring the Centers for Disease Control headquarters in Atlanta, as Washington state battles a coronavirus outbreak that has killed at least 11 people.

Driving the news: Vice President Mike Pence held a press conference with Inslee on Thursday to address the state's efforts to combat the spread of the coronavirus.

"So I told Mike not to be complementary to the governor because that governor is a snake, okay. Inslee. I said if you're nice to him, he will take advantage ... we have a lot of problems with the governor ... So, Mike may be happy with him, but I'm not."
— President Trump, speaking to reporters on Friday

Flashback: "I have had more than very robust disagreements with the current president, but I want to focus today on the work we need to do … this is a good partnership moving forward," Inslee said in his joint presser with Pence on Thursday. He emphasized that the "life and death" nature of the coronavirus supersedes disagreements with "one individual."

The big picture: There are now more than 300 coronavirus cases in at least 18 states throughout America, with the newest reports coming from a cruise ship outside California, Maryland, New Jersey, New York and Tennessee. Colorado public health officials are monitoring multiple presumptive case.

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