Amanda Marcotte of Salon believes the closest thing Donald Trump has to a guiding principle is that any inconvenient or unflattering fact should be dealt with by pretending it doesn’t exist. Knowing that, she wrote, it should come as no surprise that Trump’s approach to dealing with rising coronavirus infection rates is to pretend the disease isn’t really a serious threat, while doing whatever he can to hide any evidence to the contrary.
Although she detailed that this method of suppression and denial had long been suspected, she claimed his actions over the weekend made it become undeniable.
She pointed to a Sunday interview with Fox News’ Chris Wallace, where the president tried to brag that he passed a difficult cognitive test, even though Wallace made it clear he had taken it too and the test wasn’t that difficult. Trump also wouldn’t directly answer a question as to whether or not he will accept the results of November’s election if he loses.
But, the columnist claimed, the biggest item that stuck out from the interview was Trump’s willingness to hide the devastation caused by COVID-19 by “juking” the statistics. During his appearance, he was presented with a chart showing how the contagion was reportedly raging out of control. In response to this, Marcotte wrote the president did what he’s done many times before. He contended the problem was not the infections themselves, rather it was finding out there were any to begin with.
“If we didn’t test, you wouldn’t be able to show that chart. If we tested half as much, those numbers would be down,” he said.
The writer claimed the president’s argument was both an “echo and an escalation” of what he has said almost from the beginning of the pandemic. He’s said to have made that claim over and over, that no one would know how bad things were if his administration hadn’t demanded there be testing.
The Salon writer stated the argument was ineffective, as people would still be getting sick, even if there wasn’t any testing. She wrote there are parts of the country where the hospitalization rates are so high that healthcare services are getting overwhelmed. Some of those facilities are being flooded with sick people for the second time in the last four months. Deaths are rising at an alarming rate as well, she claimed.
The columnist said there was some good news from all of this, however. She stated it is not imperative to convince Trump the virus is real, as long as the greater populace believes in the threat. She added recent polls show there’s been a success on that front, which will make Trump’s reported attempts at hiding what actions he has or hasn’t taken during the pandemic that much more difficult.