President Donald Trump early Tuesday doubled down on a false claim that the United States is “rounding the turn” in its efforts to curb the coronavirus pandemic, complaining of the overwhelming coverage of the pandemic by the press.
ALL THE FAKE NEWS MEDIA WANTS TO TALK ABOUT IS COVID, COVID, COVID. ON NOVEMBER 4th, YOU WON’T BE HEARING SO MUCH ABOUT IT ANYMORE. WE ARE ROUNDING THE TURN!!!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) October 27, 2020
Trump’s remarks on Twitter follow a longstanding stream of efforts by the President to undermine the seriousness of the COVID-19 crisis while repeatedly complaining about widespread coverage by the press of a pandemic which has killed more than 226,000 people in the United States.
“Other than the fake news wants to scare everybody, we are absolutely rounding the corner,” Trump told reporters Monday en route to rallies in Pennsylvania.
The comments followed a tweet from hours earlier blaming the news media for “riding COVID, COVID, COVID, all the way to the Election. Losers!”
President Trump continued to shrug off the seriousness of the virus when he told supporters at rallies later in the day that his own recovery from COVID-19 was evidence of how the virus is less threatening than it has been portrayed — even though close to 1,000 people died in the United States from the virus on multiple days last week — reaching a high of roughly 1,200 deaths on Wednesday.
“I mean, I got it and I’m here. We have great medicines and therapeutics. The first lady got it…you know who else got it? Barron.”
What’s more — some former Trump associates and ex-administration officials appear to back the President’s repeated attempts to undermine the seriousness of the virus with just a week until the election.
“If you think Covid is a big deal, then you are not voting for the president,” a former senior administration official told Politico in a recent interview. “We’ve gotten through the president of the United States having Covid,” the official said adding that a positive COVID-19 test for Vice President Mike Pence’s chief of staff over the weekend was not going to be “a game changer.”
Other administration officials, however, have privately questioned whether recent outbreaks in the West Wing demonstrate an inability by the President to make decisions that can protect the American people.
“It calls into question whether the administration can be trusted to keep Americans safe if we can’t even keep our own staff safe,” one senior administration official told Politico of the recent clusters of the virus among White House staff, adding, “we supposedly work in one of the most secure places in the world.”