Ross initially responded to Fox Business host Maria Bartiromo’s speculation that the virus could cause the Chinese economy to “grind to a halt” by saying: “Every American’s heart has to go out to the victims of the coronavirus, so I don’t want to talk about a victory lap over a very unfortunate, very malignant disease.”
But he then changed his tack:
But the fact is it does give businesses yet another thing to consider when they go through their review of their supply chain. On top of all the other things, you had SARS, you have the African swine (fever) virus there, now you have this. It’s another risk factor that people need to take into account. So I think it will help to accelerate the return of jobs to North America ― some to U.S., probably some to Mexico as well.
Check out the clip here:
At least 170 people have so far died from the virus outbreak in China, which originated in the city of Wuhan and has been spreading worldwide. There have been five confirmed cases in the U.S., and 195 Americans who were evacuated from China are currently being monitored at a Southern California military base.
Ross’ suggestion that the virus could benefit the U.S. economy was slammed by people on Twitter as ”ghoulish” and “a perfect distillation of Trumpian logic.”