WASHINGTON – President Donald Trump and former Vice President Joe Biden spoke over the phone on Monday about the coronavirus response, days after Trump said he would “absolutely” take Biden's call.
"Vice President Biden and President Trump had a good call," Biden spokesperson Kate Bedingfield said in a statement. "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."
At his daily White House press conference updating the nation on the coronavirus, Trump called the call with Biden a "really wonderful, warm conversation."
"He gave me his point of view, and I fully understood that, and we just had a very friendly conversation. Lasted probably 15 minutes. And it was really good, it was really good. Really nice," Trump said. "I appreciate his calling."
Earlier in the afternoon, the president criticized Biden in a tweet, saying “what ever happened to that phone call he told the Fake News he wanted to make to me.”
“Joe Biden wanted the date for the Democrat National Convention moved to a later time period,” Trump tweeted. “Now he wants a “Virtual” Convention, one where he doesn’t have to show up. Gee, I wonder why? Also, what ever happened to that phone call he told the Fake News he wanted to make to me?”
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The Biden campaign had reached out to the White House Monday following the tweet, a Biden aide said earlier. The aide noted the campaign had not heard from the White House about setting up a call earlier.
The White House did not respond to request for comment.
In his own response to Trump’s tweet, Biden tweeted: “Mr. President, I hope we can gather in Milwaukee, but that is going to depend on you stepping up and doing what needs to be done to handle this pandemic. I have laid out how you can do that … Happy to discuss anytime.”
Mr. President, I hope we can gather in Milwaukee, but that is going to depend on you stepping up and doing what needs to be done to handle this pandemic. I have laid out how you can do that: https://t.co/YLHCGEKnUB. Happy to discuss anytime. https://t.co/ePQuQKkeZV
— Joe Biden (@JoeBiden) April 6, 2020
For days, the two officials have said they would be willing to discuss the White House response to coronavirus.
Last week, Kellyanne Conway, a senior adviser to Trump, called Biden’s criticisms to the Trump administration’s response to coronavirus “really disappointing.”
“Why doesn’t Vice President Biden call the White House today and offer some support?” Conway said, dismissing Biden “in his bunker” in Wilmington, Delaware,"just lobbing criticism."
In response to Conway’s remarks, the Kate Bedingfield, Biden's deputy communications director, said in a statement last week that the two teams will be in touch to arrange a call.
Contributing: Savannah Behrmann
This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: COVID-19: Biden, Trump speak on the phone about coronavirus after tweets