President Donald Trump and former Vice President Joe Biden had a “wonderful, warm” conversation about the nation’s coronavirus response on Monday afternoon, the president said during a press briefing.
“We had a really wonderful, warm conversation,” Trump said at Monday’s coronavirus task force briefing. “It was a very nice conversation.”
Following several days of Twitter taunts about the planned call, Trump and his likely Democratic rival in 2020 presidential race finally spoke for about 15 minutes, and the president said that he “appreciated” Biden’s call.
“He gave me his point of view, and I fully understood that,” Trump said. “And we just had a very friendly conversation.”
On Monday, Biden’s campaign issued a brief statement providing a similarly cordial account.
“Vice President Biden and President Trump had a good call,” campaign spokesperson Kate Bedingfield wrote. “VP Biden shared several suggestions for actions the Administration can take now to address the ongoing coronavirus pandemic and expressed his appreciation for the spirit of the American people in meeting the challenges facing the nation.”
When pressed for details, Trump declined to provide specifics about their discussion, saying that he and Biden agreed not to discuss the contents of the call.
“He had suggestions,” Trump said. “It doesn’t mean that I agree with those suggestions but certainly he had suggestions, and I also told him some of the things we’re doing. But the conversation was a friendly, very friendly conversation.”
The call comes on the heels of the former vice president’s campaign reaching out to state and local officials offering to assist with their responses to the COVID-19 pandemic.
According to an email addressed to “State and Local Officials” and obtained by ABC News, the campaign is seeking to “connect those offering help with those in need of it.”
“The Biden for President Campaign has been receiving a significant number of offers from individuals or organizations eager to support your efforts to respond to the COVID19 pandemic by donating, volunteering, or otherwise contributing their resources or capacity,” wrote Stacy Eichner, Political Chief of Staff for the Biden Campaign, on Sunday.
“In this moment of national emergency, we are eager to connect those offering help with those in need of it – we would like to provide these individuals and organizations with a way to reach your offices directly,” she continued. “Please let us know if you would like to identify a designee from your office for this contact list.”
The Biden campaign said the email was sent to governors’ staffs from all 50 states and Puerto Rico, but would not provide details on the types of organizations offering help. The campaign also declined to comment on whether the unnamed organizations were already coordinating with the federal government or whether the campaign had communicated about their offer with the White House.
“It’s an effort to direct our base of support that wants to help out those in need to put them directly in touch with the people who can use that help,” a Biden aide told ABC News.
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