Per The Hill, Cavuto said that Trump “was not joking” when he suggested that injecting COVID-19 patients with disinfectant should be considered. In fact, the anchor argued, the president should further clarify his remarks and admit that he had a slip of the tongue, in order to not mislead the public.
“The president was not joking in his remarks yesterday when he discussed injecting people with disinfectant. He might be dialing that back today. I don’t know why he just didn’t say, ‘I screwed up, I got it wrong, that wasn’t my intention.’ This is an important medical distinction.”
On Thursday, during the daily White House press conference, Trump floated a number of supposed therapies and cures for COVID-19. Pointing to data that appears to suggest the virus will not spread as fast during the summer, Trump said that patients should perhaps be exposed to heat and strong lights. He asked a question regarding injecting disinfectant as a potential therapy, and later clarified that he was not suggesting injection of any disinfectants, but perhaps “cleaning and sterilization of an area,” per PolitiFact.
Public health experts and scientists were quick to lambaste the president, pointing out that injecting disinfectant would be extremely dangerous. The company Lysol released an official statement, clarifying that “under no circumstance” should its products be used in such a way.
Less than 24 hours after making the remarks, Trump walked them back. The president said that he was being “sarcastic” in order to mock the reporters present at the conference.
According to Cavuto, whether Trump was indeed sarcastic or not, he needs to advise the public against using disinfectants to treat COVID-19.
“I think it’s important [for] the president to… come out unequivocally [and say] ‘some of you took me seriously, even though I sounded serious saying it, please do not, please do not even consider injecting some of this stuff into your system,” Cavuto said.
Cavuto and Trump have previously butted heads. Notably, in 2019, the two men feuded over Trump’s suggestion that Fox News had been unfair to him. Trump said that the network no longer “works” for him, and the anchor responded that it is not supposed to.
It is not only Cavuto and public health experts that believe Trump’s recent remarks were anti-scientific. On Friday, Speaker of the House of Representatives Nancy Pelosi suggested that Trump’s comments are not even surprising, arguing that his remarks about potential coronavirus treatment are “consistent” with many of his previous statements.
According to Pelosi, top Republicans — including Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell — reject science and data as well. The House speaker said that the Republicans “don’t believe in science and they don’t believe in governance.”