Covering Coronavirus: A Tale of Two Washingtons

April 17, 2020

Luca Micheli; René DeAnda

What the feud between President Trump and Washington Gov. Inslee reveals about federal-state tensions in the coronavirus fight. In his conversation with Gov. Inslee, FRONTLINE correspondent Miles O’Brien discovers that “what should be a partnership with the federal government is like this hostile relationship.” 

Inslee describes a scenario in which states are left competing with each other for scarce resources: “We are searching the world for every potential warehouse that has any of this personal protective equipment… and states are bidding against one another,” he tells O’Brien. “It would be much more efficient, economically and otherwise, if the federal government was playing a more vigorous role.”

Listen to the podcast now, and stay tuned for O’Brien’s documentary Coronavirus Pandemic, premiering April 21, which explores the differing responses to the coronavirus outbreak in Washington D.C. and Washington State — where the first known U.S. case of COVID-19 was detected.

 

The FRONTLINE Dispatch is made possible by the Abrams Foundation Journalism Initiative.