At a Fox News townhall even on Tuesday, President Donald Trump addressed the coronavirus pandemic — and made two misleading claims that are being panned on social media.
In discussion with Fox News’ Bill Hemmer, Trump claimed he never described coronavirus testing as “perfect.” Asked by Hemmer why, in late February, he did just that, Trump responded that he was talking about his July 25 phone conversation with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky; Trump has also used the word “perfect” to describe that conversation, which led to his impeachment. But let’s check the transcript:
Olivier Knox, on Twitter, wrote, “Good question from Fox News’ Hemmer to Trump about why he called testing “perfect” in late February. Trump says he was talking about his call with the Ukrainian leader.”
But Knox tweeted Trump’s exact words, showing that in late February, he specifically stated, “The tests are all perfect.”\The second misleading claim had to do with New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo. Trump implied that Cuomo, who has been warning of severe hospital equipment shortages in his state, didn’t purchase ventilators in 2015.
Good question from Fox News’s Hemmer to Trump about why he called testing “perfect” in late February. Trump says he was talking about his call with the Ukrainian leader. Transcript: pic.twitter.com/JVIgQU89Zy
— Olivier Knox (@OKnox) March 24, 2020
Trump later appeared to accuse NY Gov. Andrew Cuomo of establishing “death panels,” shocking viewers with his truly absurd decision to quote right-wing website Gateway Pundit.
CNN’s Daniel Dale explained where Trump got the idea that Cuomo failed to come through with ventilators in 2015: he “just read out a headline from the very bad website Gateway Pundit claiming Cuomo established ‘death panels’ instead of buying ventilators.”
Trump just read out a headline from the very bad website Gateway Pundit claiming Cuomo established “death panels” instead of buying ventilators.
— Daniel Dale (@ddale8) March 24, 2020
Pretty sure Trump just used Gateway Pundit as a source for his oppo hit on Gov. Cuomo during his Fox News coronavirus townhall.
And my god this whole thing is wildly irresponsible. pic.twitter.com/9k69foHPk4
— Lis Power (@LisPower1) March 24, 2020
The New Yorker’s Susan Glasser tweeted, “’He’s supposed to be buying his own ventilators’: Trump to Andrew Cuomo and NYCity Has there ever been a less empathetic American President?” And Washington Post columnist Jennifer Rubin, responding to Glasser’s tweet, wrote, “No, and he is wrong.”
Never Trump conservative George Conway wrote, “I was never a fan of @NYGovCuomo. But he’s doing a terrific job with these presentations. Imagine how much better off the country would be if @realDonaldTrump had just one-quarter of Cuomo’s clear-mindedness and honesty.”
The BBC’s Katty Katy, a frequent MSNBC contributor, tweeted, “That Cuomo Trump relationship didn’t last long.”
OH MY GOD
The president of the United States just accused the governor of New York of setting up death panels and lotteries rather than buying ventilators.
— S.V. Dáte (@svdate) March 24, 2020
‘He’s supposed to be buying his own ventilators’ — Trump to Andrew Cuomo and NYCity
Has there ever been a less empathetic American President?
— Susan Glasser (@sbg1) March 24, 2020
No and he is wrong. That is what DPA is for. Weak!!!!
— Jennifer Rubin (@JRubinBlogger) March 24, 2020
He was shamed into taking even a half-assed action.
The only thing he cares about is reopening his golf and hotel businesses because his profits matter more than your lives or the lives of your family and friends.
(He has no friends, only people he can exploit).
— lawhawk (@lawhawk) March 24, 2020
That Cuomo Trump relationship didn’t last long.
— Katty Kay (@KattyKay_) March 24, 2020
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