It’s hard to find humor when it comes to the coronavirus, but Donald Trump’s campaign tried to spin a statement he made about the pandemic during Saturday’s rally as a joke. It was in reaction to this statement from the president:
“When you do testing to that extent, you’re gonna find more people you’re gonna find more cases. So I said to my people slow the testing down, please.”
Reuters quoted a White House official as saying, “He was obviously kidding. We are leading the world in testing and have conducted 25 million + in testing.”
But today he was asked point-blank if he did ask to slow down testing and his answer sure didn’t sound like a joke.
To all of you @realDonaldTrump enablers at @WhiteHouse and @GOP who said Trump was “joking” about slowing down testing, he made you look like liars and fools again. He’s not joking. He’s pathetic, stupid and dangerous.#MondayMorning Thoughts https://t.co/VKF6sRYYgD
— Ted Lieu (@tedlieu) June 22, 2020
Senator Tammy Duckworth (D-IL) adds:
It wasn’t a joke. Trump won’t deny that he asked to slow down testing because he thinks the problem w/#COVID19 is how bad the numbers look, NOT how many people die. More Americans died because of Trump‘s failures & more will die in the months ahead because of his incompetence.
The Washington Post’s Jennifer Rubin says “joking” is simply Trump’s “all-purpose excuse when he says something stupid even though there is zero evidence he was being humorous. (And what is humorous about reducing the number of tests?) At the very least, then, Trump is entirely cavalier and unfeeling about the nearly 120,000 Americans who have died and more than 2 million who have been infected.”
Know how you can tell that Trump's admission on Saturday that he ordered aides to slow down testing is NOT a joke?
Because his administration is CURRENTLY withholding $14 billion from testing.
— Zac Petkanas (@Zac_Petkanas) June 22, 2020
Watch more above from MSNBC.