Biden Campaign Releases ‘President Trump’s Coronavirus Lies: 152 and Counting’

Joe Biden’s presidential campaign released the following, via email:


BIDEN FOR PRESIDENT REPORT

TO:              Interested Parties
FROM:       Kate Bedingfield, Deputy Campaign Manager and Communications Director
RE:              President Trump’s Coronavirus Lies: 152 and Counting
DATE:        August 14, 2020


As Vice President Biden has said many times, the American people can face any challenge if you simply tell them the truth, but from the very beginning of this crisis President Trump has refused to be honest with the American people about the scope of the challenge that we face with COVID-19, or the steps needed to stop it, save lives, and get our country back to work.

Simply put, Trump has regularly lied to the American people on matters of life-and-death. This report details over 150 instances of Trump’s misleading claims or outright mistruths. There are undoubtedly more. As our country crosses the grim milestone of five million coronavirus cases, it shows the clear cost to the American people of his dishonesty.

From the outset, President Trump has lied by downplaying the threat posed by COVID-19, claiming that “one day, like a miracle, it will disappear” — repeating Chinese Communist Party propaganda about the virus instead of listening to the warnings being raised by our government’s leading public health experts and the intelligence community. Many months later, Trump has repeatedly returned to this same lie even as cases spike and America faces the worst outbreak among any advanced economy .

Trump has lied by attacking the medical experts who should be guiding our response — launching personal attacks at Dr. Fauci, twisting the advice being provided by the top public health experts in America, and constantly undermining guidance from them on the steps we must take to get COVID-19 under control. Unfortunately for Trump, poll after poll shows that the American people overwhelmingly trust the experts like Dr. Fauci over him.

Similarly, President Trump has misled the American people by hawking unproven, and possibly dangerous, treatments for the coronavirus even as he spent months dismissing and even attacking common sense steps to slow the spread of the virus, including wearing a mask and practicing social distancing.

We can, and we must, do better than Donald Trump’s lies if we want to stop COVID-19. At every step of this crisis, Trump’s failed leadership has produced tragic results, with more than 160,000 Americans dead, over five million infected, and our economy reeling from the biggest contraction in recorded history.

To beat this virus, we need a President who will level with the American people and tell them the truth about the challenges we face, and how to overcome them. Vice President Biden knows that if we’re going to beat this virus, we need to be honest with the American people — we need a President who leads by example, not someone who shirks responsibility and lies constantly in an attempt to cover up for his own failures.

That’s why Vice President Biden has laid out a bold plan to combat this virus — starting by listening to the experts, telling the truth about what it will take to overcome this scourge, and then mobilizing our country to get it done. That’s how we’ve always come together as one America, united in common purpose, to face the greatest challenges that have faced our nation, and that’s exactly how we’re going to beat COVID-19.

TRUMP’S COVID-19 LIES:

A. Minimizing the Threat of the Virus:

  1. Trump claimed that the threat of coronavirus to the U.S. was a Democrat political hoax.
  2. Trump repeatedly undersold the threat of the virus and claimed his administration was “ahead” of it.
  3. Trump claimed the media was exaggerating the threat of coronavirus.
  4. Trump repeatedly claimed that the virus would simply “go away.”
  5. Trump claimed that warmer weather weakens the virus, and that it would go away by April, based on information given to him by President Xi.
  6. In mid-April, Trump claimed that some states did not have “any problem” with coronavirus.
  7. In July, Trump claimed that “large portions” of the U.S. are “corona-free.”
  8. Trump repeatedly implied the virus was no more serious than the seasonal flu.
  9. Trump baselessly asserted that the coronavirus mortality rate calculated by the WHO is incorrect.
  10. Trump claimed that the virus is 99% harmless.
  11. In mid-June, Trump claimed that the virus was “dying out” and “leaving.”
  12. Trump has downplayed recent surges as “flames” that could easily be “put out.”
  13. Trump has repeatedly understated the crisis in Florida.
  14. Trump implies that the virus does not harm young people and that children are “virtually immune.”
  15. Trump said that coronavirus could be referred to as simply “a flu” or “a germ,” and that no one really knows what to call it.
  16. Trump claimed that one of the COVID-19 death projections did not account for mitigation measures, like social distancing.
  17. Trump tried to differentiate the Spanish influenza from the current pandemic by claiming that the mortality rate among those infected was 50%.
  18. Trump claimed that health experts, including Dr. Fauci, said coronavirus was not a problem in February.
  19. Trump claimed that “nobody knew anything” about the virus in January.
  20. Trump claimed, in early March, that the virus had only hit three weeks ago.
  21. In April, Trump claimed, “you may not even have corona coming back” in a second wave.

B. Trump’s Response to Virus:
General:

  1. Trump claimed that no one could have predicted that the United States would face a pandemic because of coronavirus.
  2. Trump lied about and exaggerated the efficacy of his administration’s response, claiming that they had done a “great” job at containing and combating the virus.
  3. Trump repeatedly claimed that the virus was “under control.”
  4. Trump claims that the United States’ response to the virus has been the most aggressive in the world.
  5. Trump baselessly claims that he has been “right” about coronavirus more than anyone else, including public health experts.
  6. Trump misleadingly cited a Gallup poll to exaggerate the approval ratings of his administration’s response to Coronavirus.
  7. Trump claimed that the public’s approval rating of his response to the virus was higher than the approval of the Obama administration’s handling of H1N1.

China Travel Restrictions:

  1. On at least 40 occasions, Trump claimed he had imposed an outright “ban” on travel from China and “closed the borders” against the advice of experts, which he has claimed saved “thousands,” “hundreds of thousands,” and even “millions” of lives.
  2. Trump claimed he was the first to restrict travel to and from China. He was particularly adamant that Italy and other European countries had not limited travel to and from China, which led to their high number of coronavirus cases.
  3. Trump claimed that everyone, including public health experts, disagreed with his decision to implement restrictions from China.

Europe Travel Restrictions:

  1. Trump claimed at least 20 times to have banned travel from Europe, and claimed that all U.S. citizens travelling from Europe would be subject to screening, testing, and quarantine if necessary.
  2. Trump claimed to have barred travel to Italy prior to his March 11 ban on travel to all of Europe.
  3. Trump claims that cases are also surging in European countries because of their extended lock-down orders.

U.S. Borders:

  1. Trump claimed the U.S. had some troops on the U.S.-Canadian Border.
  2. Trump claims that without more stringent patrol of the U.S.-Mexico border, the border would have become the “global epicenter of the viral transmission.”

Dr. Fauci:

  1. Trump attempts to undermine Dr. Fauci’s credibility with false claims about Fauci’s past recommendations.
  2. Trump claims he has a very good relationship with Dr. Fauci and has distanced himself from his administration’s attempts to discredit Dr. Fauci.

Other Claims:

  1. Trump claimed states did not need federal assistance to acquire medical supplies and personal protective equipment and that they were fully stocked.
  2. Trump claimed in April that he hadn’t left the White House in “months.”
  3. Trump repeatedly claimed to have fully invoked the Defense Production Act (DPA), which enables the federal government to order private industry to produce specific items like testing and PPE when he had not actually done so.

C. Testing Capacities:
Nature of Tests:

  1. Trump claimed multiple times that testing was readily available for anyone who wanted one.
  2. Trump has repeatedly claimed that U.S. testing is “perfect” and the “best in the world.”
  3. Trump later admitted that there were some issues with the initial coronavirus test, but claimed it took “about a week” to solve.
  4. Trump claimed that testing was “overrated.” and that “testing isn’t necessary.”
  5. Trump said past administrations were to blame for his administration’s delays in developing and deploying coronavirus tests.

Number of Tests:

  1. Trump has continuously claimed that the United States is “number one” in testing, or has the “best testing.”
  2. In March, Trump claimed that the U.S. had done more testing than any other nation, including South Korea.
  3. By April, Trump escalated his previous lie and claimed that the U.S. had completed more coronavirus tests than the rest of the world (or all other “major” countries) combined. He has made some version of this claim at least 13 times.
  4. Trump said the U.S. would not “need anywhere near” 5 million tests.
  5. Trump said in late April that we would reach 5 million tests conducted per day “very soon.”
  6. Trump claimed that the federal government was providing more testing capacities than Governors needed.
  7. Trump baselessly claimed the report by the Inspector General for the Department of Health and Human Services, which detailed complaints from hospitals regarding wait times and shortages of testing supplies, was “wrong” and politically motivated.
  8. Trump exaggerated the number of tests that the U.S. had completed.

Number of Cases:

  1. Throughout the spring, Trump claimed the U.S. had reached its peak in cases and was “heading down.”
  2. Trump claims that we only have the highest number of coronavirus cases globally because we were doing the most testing in the world.
  3. Trump has repeatedly claimed that coronavirus cases only surged in June because of increased testing.
  4. When forced to admit that the increase in cases is not exclusively a result of more testing, Trump claims that most of the cases are harmless.

Testing and the Private Sector:

  1. Trump claimed that Google had engineered a website that helped Americans decide whether they need testing, and where they could obtain it.
  2. Trump claimed testing was available and provided to passengers on trains and planes.
  3. In May, Trump said workers returning to their jobs “should have no problem” obtaining a coronavirus test.

D. Coronavirus Deaths and Mortality Rates:

  1. On April 10, Trump said that the final number of U.S. deaths could be as few as 55,000.
  2. In mid-April, Trump predicted that the total number of casualties would be around 50,000 – 60,000.
  3. In late April, Trump predicted that the total number of casualties would be around 60,000 – 70,000.
  4. On May 1, Trump estimated that the total number of coronavirus deaths would be under 100,000.
  5. Trump misleadingly compared the coronavirus deaths with the projected number of deaths, absent any mitigation.
  6. Trump claimed that the U.S. coronavirus mortality rate is one of the best in the world.
  7. Trump claims that the death rate is a better indicator than new cases.
  8. Trump claimed in mid-July the death rate from coronavirus was “down tenfold.”

E. Personal Protective Equipment:
General:

  1. Trump claimed that hospitals were artificially inflating their need for equipment.
  2. Trump claimed that no one could have predicted that the country would ever need tens of thousands of ventilators.

States and Personal Protective Equipment:

  1. Trump claimed that, by mid-April, there was no demand for ventilators.
  2. Trump seemed to endorse Jared Kushner’s claim that the Strategic National Stockpile was the federal government’s, and was not intended to be shared with the states.
  3. Trump claimed that NY state had rejected recommendations to buy 16,000 ventilators at a cheap price in 2015, and NY state had established lotteries and death panels in response to the virus.
  4. Trump claimed that NY State asked for more ventilators without realizing that eight thousand had already been delivered to the state.
  5. Trump claimed to have never said that governors were asking for equipment they did not need.
  6. Trump claims he did not threaten to limit help to governors who “did not treat him right.”
  7. Trump claimed that the federal government was providing states with all the materials they need.
  8. Trump claimed that Governor Cuomo sent sick patients back to nursing homes when they could have been treated on the USNS Comfort.

Private Sector Involvement:

  1. Trump claimed that automotive companies were producing ventilators, per his orders, by mid-March.

F. Treatments and Vaccines:
Vaccine:

  1. Trump repeatedly claimed a vaccine would be available “soon.”
  2. Trump said the virus would go away without a vaccine.

Hydroxychloroquine:

  1. Trump repeatedly said that the anti-malaria drug hydroxychloroquine was proven effective in treating coronavirus.
  2. Trump repeatedly said that the anti-malaria drug hydroxychloroquine is safe to use to treat COVID-19.
  3. Trump denounced a report conducted at Veterans Administration hospitals, which found no evidence that hydroxychloroquine helped people, and in fact may increase likelihood of death. He also claimed it was the only study that undercut his claims regarding the drug.

Other Treatment-Related Lies:

  1. Trump says he is “all for masks.”
  2. Trump rejects the idea that widespread mask usage would successfully prevent the spread of the virus and claims that masks can actually cause problems and are a “double-edged sword.”
  3. Trump later undersells the value of wearing masks, only tepidly endorsing their use.
  4. Trump claims that governors “go by the CDC guidelines” regarding masks.
  5. Trump said that he was being sarcastic when he asked medical experts to look into viability of injecting disinfectants to treat virus, that he had only asked medical experts to look into whether or not the sun could treat the virus, and that he was only talking about using disinfectants on hands, not to ingest.
  6. Trump retweeted a conspiracy video that claimed that neither masks nor shutdowns were necessary to combat coronavirus, and that hydroxychloroquine is the cure for coronavirus, and later endorsed the video and said the video makers were “respected” doctors.
  7. Trump claims that he had not been asking Dr. Birx questions about the impact of sunlight and heat, but was instead speaking to the laboratory expert about sunlight.

G. Other China-Related Lies:

  1. Trump claimed that, although the virus spread out of China, China contained it to  Wuhan.
  2. Trump exaggerated Tim Cook’s statement that Apple production plants in China were “back to normal” at the end of February.

H. World Health Organization:

  1. Trump claimed he never threatened to freeze WHO funding, just minutes after having made the threat.
  2. Trump claimed that the WHO ignored the spread of the virus in Wuhan.

I. Blaming Democrats, the Obama Administration, and Vice President Biden:
Obama Administration:

  1. Trump claimed that the Obama administration had implemented a rule on testing that limited the FDA’s capacity to test.
  2. Trump has repeatedly claimed that he inherited a flawed COVID-19 test from the Obama administration.
  3. Trump claimed that the Obama administration left no medical supplies or ventilators in the national stockpile.
  4. Trump claims that the Obama administration stopped testing for H1N1 because they did not want to increase the number of cases.

Vice President Biden:

  1. Trump claimed that the Obama Administration’s response – and Vice President Biden’s response in particular – to H1N1 was a huge disaster.
  2. Trump claimed that Vice President Biden had apologized to him for calling him Xenophobic. Trump claimed this apology took place on a Friday evening, when it wouldn’t generate any coverage.
  3. Trump claimed that a Biden aide had made up a prediction that Trump would try to delay November’s election.
  4. Trump baselessly claims that listening to Vice President Biden would have resulted in hundreds of thousands more deaths.

Democrats:

  1. Trump claimed criticism regarding testing was a partisan attack, and felt it was a “personal attack.”
  2. Trump repeatedly claims that the Democrat policy of open borders caused coronavirus.
  3. Trump later revised this claim, baselessly stating that if the Democrats had their way and opened borders, border states would be the global epicenter of the virus.
  4. Trump later claimed that Democrats did not take the virus seriously in February and March.
  5. Trump has made various false claims about Pelosi’s visit to San Francisco’s Chinatown, and then claimed that she deleted her tweet about her visit to Chinatown.
  6. Trump claims that Democrats are the ones opposing “payments” to Americans and that he supported larger payments than Democrats.

J. Pandemic and the Media:

  1. Trump claims that the media has been unfair to him and misrepresented how his administration has handled the crisis.
  2. Trump claims that the media has unfairly focused on the number of coronavirus cases, rather than the mortality rate.
  3. Trump claimed “unknown sources” cited by the New York Times and Post were made up.
  4. Trump claimed the media did not call to ask for a comment before publishing stories regarding Alex Azar.
  5. Trump denounced the media for reporting that he and Jay Inslee had clashed on the phone or that Jay Isnlee had told him the federal government needed to step up (“We need Tom Brady”). Trump claimed that the comment was meant positively.
  6. Trump claimed a New York Times correspondent, Michael Grynbaum, had written a positive article about him.

K. The Lockdown:
General:

  1. Trump repeatedly exaggerated how quickly the country could “open up.”
  2. Trump claims that the country has reopened “safely” and will remain “open.”
  3. Trump claimed that the states that did not have stay-at-home orders were “not in jeopardy.”
  4. Trump claimed that the President has the power to decide whether or not to open up states.
  5. Trump claimed that continued economic shutdown would result in greater number of deaths, by suicide, than Coronavirus would cause.
  6. Trump claimed that Dr. Birx had not discouraged Americans from having dinner or cocktail parties, and was simply referring to certain states.
  7. Trump claimed that anti-lockdown protests socially distanced, and that protestors were six feet apart.
  8. Trump claims that Democrats only want to reimpose shutdowns to hurt Trump’s election chances.
  9. Trump claims that states with Democratic governors are prohibiting him from holding rallies for political reasons.
  10. Trump claimed people were getting arrested for listening to church services in their cars.

Schools:

  1. Trump has claimed that people are opposing school reopening for political reasons.
  2. Trump claims that “everyone” is in favor of opening schools.
  3. Trump claims that we can safely reopen all schools.
  4. Trump claims that keeping schools shut would be more dangerous for families.
  5. Trump claimed that Vice President Biden does not want to open schools.
  6. Trump attempts to discredit the CDC’s recommendations for school re-openings.

L. The Economy:
General:

  1. Trump baselessly muses that “maybe” the coronavirus improved U.S. jobs numbers.
  2. Trump baselessly claims that the economy will be even stronger than it was prior to the virus.
  3. Trump claims that, prior to the virus, he was paying off the national debt.
  4. In early June, Trump claimed the economy was “rocking and rolling.”
  5. In early July, Trump claimed the economy is “roaring back to life” like “nobody has even seen before.”
  6. Trump claimed that he would exempt farmworkers from restrictions on immigration, because in previous instances when the border was closed, all farmers went out of business.
  7. Trump understates coronavirus’ catastrophic impact on small businesses.

Coronavirus Relief Act:

  1. Trump said that the Paycheck Protection Program had been administered seamlessly.
  2. Trump claimed that he was the first President to provide paid sick leave for American workers.
  3. Trump denied that Wells Fargo had stopped taking small business loan applications.

M. Lies about Voting and Elections:

  1. Trump claims mail-in voting enables “massive” voter fraud.
  2. Trump says that Americans can safely vote in person this November.
  3. Trump claims that absentee ballots are safer than mail-in ballots.

N. Other:

  1. Trump floats the idea of postponing the election to protect against fraudulent election results, saying it could take “years” to determine results of election.
  2. Trump claimed that Captain Crozier had sent the letter regarding the outbreak on the USS Roosevelt  to 28 people.
  3. Trump claimed that the outbreak on the USS Roosevelt resulted in 540 people testing positive.
  4. Trump blamed Captain Crozier for stopping in Vietnam during the pandemic, implying that this was the reason for the outbreak on ship.
  5. Trump exaggerates the number of people on the Grand Princess cruise, saying there were close to 5,000 people aboard.
  6. Trump blames Black Lives Matter protests for the increase in cases.
  7. Trump blames Mexico for the spike in coronavirus cases.

###

Advertisement