President-elect Joe Biden became emotional this week, talking to firefighters, nurses, and other frontline workers in the coronavirus pandemic.
“The physical impacts of this virus are devastating. I myself have held the hand of dying patients who were crying out for their families that they can’t see. I’ve taken care of coworkers as they fight for their lives on a ventilator, and knowing they got sick because their hospital or their government hasn’t protected them,” said Mary Turner, an intensive care unit nurse in Minnesota while holding back tears.
“I’m sorry I’m so emotional,” she added through tears. “You’ve got me emotional,” Biden responds, while wiping away his own tears.
The online roundtable Wednesday came the same day America had a record number of deaths in one day, more than 1,800, and recorded more than 250,000 deaths total since the beginning of the pandemic.
“It’s not enough to praise you. We have to protect you, we have to pay you,” Biden told the group of frontline workers.
Biden participated in the roundtable from Wilmington, Delaware, where he has a home and has been hunkered down since Election Day.
The roundtable is one of several the president-elect has held in the last week, bringing together business leaders, community members, frontline workers, and experts to begin collaborating on possible strategies to control the spread of the coronavirus and rebuild the economy.
Biden has convened a coronavirus advisory board to begin working on solutions and strategies for when Biden and vice president-elect Kamala Harris are sworn into office in January.
He has encouraged a nationwide effort to require masks and social distancing. However, state governors would have to make those decisions.