GOP Sen Claims Coronavirus Is A Joke When Reporter Asks What Precautions He’s Taking: ‘Wanna Shake Hands?’
Senator James Inhofe (R-OK), who is 85 years of age, brushed off a question by a reporter on Capitol Hill who asked him what precautions he’s taking to prevent the spread of coronavirus.
Inhofe just ignored the question and asked sarcastically: “Wanna shake hands?”
The COVID-19 coronavirus is mainly affecting people over the age of 65 who have weaker immune systems. What’s concerning is that nearly half of the senators in the U.S. are over the age of 65.
“Mr. Inhofe, chairman of the Armed Services committee, is one of five octogenarians in the Senate,” writes the New York Times’ Nicholas Fandos and Margot Sanger-Katz. “In an institution where seniority reigns, it is an understatement to say that older Americans are overrepresented in Congress. Nearly half of the senators are 65 or older. Nearly 150 members of the comparatively younger House of Representatives are above that age.”
Speaking to the Times, Dr. Jack Rowe, a professor of health policy and aging at Columbia University, said he’s baffled as to why members of Congress would ignore the warning.
“There are 535 of these people between the two chambers — you can’t tell me there aren’t any of them that don’t have chronic disease who would be at special risk,” he said. “These people should be excused. They should be sitting at home looking at their computers, listening to the debate and voting, and that would send the right message.”