Trump Repeatedly Quotes Fox Guest to Rail Against ‘LameStream Media’ Criticism of Coronavirus Briefings

President Donald Trump kicked off the new week by repeatedly praising Gayle Trotter, a guest on Fox News, for bashing the media coverage of his coronavirus response and White House press briefings.

“Thank you Gayle. I only wish the public could fully understand how corrupt & dishonest so much of our Lamestream Media is,” Trump wrote in response to a tweet from Trotter claiming the media is at “war” with the president.

“My Press Conferences are vital. They are reaching millions of people that are not being told the truth, & haven’t been for years (Witch-Hunts, Fake News)!” he added.

Here’s another tweet where Trump quoted Trotter — though lacking a bit in context.

Trump’s interest in Trotter emanated from her appearance Sunday with Fox News host Howard Kurtz on MediaBuzz. Trotter, a conservative pundit, was asked about media criticism of Trump spreading false information passing blame to others throughout the pandemic. She responded that “the establishment media has not admitted that they were wrong and the president was right” on how to deal with it.

Other comments from Trotter on MediaBuzz got Trump’s attention, including one in which she criticized PBS reporter Yamiche Alcindor, who was berated by the president for her questioning last week:

[Mediaite]

After lying about it on Sunday, Trump on Monday repeats claim that New York asked for more ventilators than it will need

Speaking with the coronavirus task force in the White House Rose Garden on Sunday, March 29, President Donald Trump lied to PBS reporter Yamiche Alcindor that he didn’t say that some equipment governors are requesting for their coronavirus responses is not actually needed (he had in fact said that to Fox’s Sean Hannity.)

The following day, Trump did a 54-minute interview on Fox & Friends, and he repeated his claim that some medical equipment requested by New York and other states won’t be needed, despite reports of widespread shortages of medical supplies, especially ventilators.

Predictably, none of the show hosts questioned him on his contradictory statements. 


DONALD TRUMP (PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES): We delivered 4,000 ventilators to New York to their warehouse which happens to be located, which is interesting, in Edison, New Jersey. It was signed off, they were delivered, and they weren’t used. And we said a number of days later, why aren’t you using these ventilators? I don’t know what happened but we delivered thousands of them and we’ve delivered them to a lot of people. You know, there’s a whole question about that. I think New York should be fine, based on the numbers that we see, they should have more than enough.
I mean, I’m hearing stories that they’re not used or they’re not used right but what we find anywhere from two to four thousand that have been sent and aren’t used, you know, we’ve done a job. Now we’re still getting more ventilators. We’re going to have — after this is over, we’ll be selling, they will be selling ventilators for $1 a piece. We’ll have a lot of them. But, you know, they have to build them because for the most part, the whole world is short on ventilators.

On March 28, The Washington Post reported that a recent batch of medical supplies sent from an emergency federal stockpile fell far short of what state leaders have requested — Massachusetts and Maine received about 17% and 5%, respectively, of protective gear they requested, and Colorado got enough supplies “for only one full day of statewide operations.” In contrast, Florida — home to a pro-Trump governor and electorate — is receiving three times the supplies it requested. (The Post did note however that aid disbursement does “not appear to follow discernible political or geographic lines.”)

Throughout March, Fox shows — that Trump obsessively watches — engaged in sensationalist coverage blaming Democratic-leaning states for the viral spread of COVID-19. One particular focal point was Trump favorite Tucker Carlson speculating that homeless people and their “filth” are to blame for spreading the virus in California. Trump also demanded on March 27 that governors should be grateful for any assistance the federal government provides. The same day Hannity said that New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo should stop “whining, bitching, and complaining” about a lack of medical supplies and instead “thank Donald Trump” for the help.

[Media Matters]

Trump signals growing skepticism about coronavirus lockdown

President Donald Trump on Sunday night appeared to suggest he would soon consider relaxing federal guidelines meant to combat the coronavirus pandemic — even as senior administration officials promoted those measures as critical to preventing further loss of life and predicted a grim week ahead.

“WE CANNOT LET THE CURE BE WORSE THAN THE PROBLEM ITSELF,” Trump wrote on Twitter shortly before midnight. “AT THE END OF THE 15 DAY PERIOD, WE WILL MAKE A DECISION AS TO WHICH WAY WE WANT TO GO!”

The president’s message referred to the administration’s “15 Days to Slow the Spread” initiative, announced last Monday, which urged Americans to practice social distancing; avoid gatherings of more than 10 people; work or attend school from home whenever possible; and abstain from eating or drinking at bars, restaurants and food courts.

At the White House coronavirus task force’s daily press briefing Sunday,Vice President Mike Pence noted that the country was seven days into the effortand praised Americans’ participation thus far.

“With the cooperation, compassion, generosity, and prayers of the American people, we can slow the spread, we can protect the most vulnerable, and we can heal our land,” Pence said. “So let’s do it, America.”

But while the guidance is helping “flatten the curve” of infected individuals within the United States, it has also contributed to a precipitous drop in economic activity.

Even more stringent directives issued by state and local authorities, such as large-scale “shelter-in-place” orders, have similarly spooked financial markets and provoked fears of an imminent recession.

On Monday morning, Trump signaled growing skepticism regarding those health-related lockdowns, retweeting a handful of accounts that proposed Americans return to work in the near future and advocated for a resumption of daily life in the U.S.

“The fear of the virus cannot collapse our economy that President Trump has built up,” read a tweet shared by the president. “We The People are smart enough to keep away from others if we know that we are sick or they are sick! After 15 days are over the world can begin to heal!”

In another post Trump retweeted, a Twitter user wrote that after 15 days, “we keep the high risk groups protected as necessary and the rest of us go back to work.”

The president’s social media activity came as Surgeon General Jerome Adams made a string of appearances on morning news shows, repeatedly cautioning that the coming days would prove among the most difficult in Americans’ fight against the public health crisis.

[Politico]

Reality

Trump’s tweets came minutes after Fox News Steve Hilton said the same thing.

Trump lashes out at networks, newspapers: All I see is ‘hatred of me’


President Trump
 late Sunday lashed out at much of the media over their coverage of his administration’s response to the coronavirus outbreak, claiming that all he’s seen is “hatred of me.”

“I watch and listen to the Fake News, CNN, MSDNC, ABC, NBC, CBS, some of FOX (desperately & foolishly pleading to be politically correct), the [New York Times], & the [Washington Post], and all I see is hatred of me at any cost,” Trump said on Twitter. 

“Don’t they understand that they are destroying themselves?” he asked. 

Trump has regularly attacked the press since entering the White House, often referring to reporters as “fake news” and the “enemy of the people.” Last week, Trump railed against an NBC reporter, calling him “terrible,” after being asked what he’d say to Americans who are scared. 

His tirade against the group of news outlets came after a day in which several state and federal lawmakers called on the president to use his authority to help health systems being overwhelmed by a surge of patients. 

Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker (D) said on CNN that states were overpaying for medical equipment and were being forced to compete with each other for much-needed resources. Rather than a competition, it “should have been a coordinated effort by the federal government,” he said. 

“It’s a wild, wild West out there, and indeed [we’re] overpaying for [personal protective equipment] because of that competition,” Pritzker said. 

Trump railed against Pritzker and CNN just hours later, tweeting that they “shouldn’t be blaming the Federal Government for their own shortcomings.”

Pritzker tweeted in response that Trump “wasted precious months when you could’ve taken action to protect Americans & Illinoisans.”

“Get off Twitter & do your job,” Pritzker said. 

Speaking at a White House briefing on Sunday, Trump said that he would reject calls to ramp up production of critical medical supplies through the use of the Defense Production Act.

He said that he’s used the law as a source of leverage in negotiations with companies to persuade them to manufacture equipment, but he contended that it would nationalize industries and that he was not in favor it. The Defense Production Act does not nationalize industry, but it does allow the government to direct private businesses to make certain supplies. “We’re a country not based on nationalizing our business. Call a person over in Venezuela,” Trump told reporters. “How did nationalization of their businesses work out? Not too well.”

[The Hill]

Trump denies spreading coronavirus misinformation on “Hannity”

President Trump denied in a Thursday tweet that he told Fox News’ Sean Hannity that people who are feeling sick should continue to go to work amid the coronavirus outbreak.

The state of play: While Trump didn’t explicitly say that sick Americans should go to work, he did state that those with mild coronavirus cases can still recover while going about their daily lives — an assertion that contradicts public health officials’ recommendations on how to manage the illness.

“I NEVER said people that are feeling sick should go to work. This is just more Fake News and disinformation put out by the Democrats, in particular MSDNC. Comcast covers the CoronaVirus situation horribly, only looking to do harm to the incredible & successful effort being made!”

— Trump’s tweet

  • What Trump said on “Hannity”: “If we have thousands or hundreds of thousands of people that get better just by sitting around and even going to work — some of them go to work, but they get better.”
  • What the CDC recommends“People who are mildly ill with COVID-19 are able to isolate at home during their illness. You should restrict activities outside your home, except for getting medical care. Do not go to work, school, or public areas. Avoid using public transportation, ride-sharing, or taxis.”

In the same interview, Trump contradicted the World Health Organization’s assertion that the virus has a 3.4% mortality rate, calling it “a false number” because of the number of people who have had “very mild” cases and recovered without being diagnosed.

  • “They don’t know about the easy cases because the easy cases don’t go to the hospital. They don’t report to doctors or the hospital in many cases. So I think that number is really high. Personally, I would say that number is way under 1%,” he claimed without evidence.

[Axios]

Reality

Donald Trump tweeted he never told Sean Hannity sick people should go to work.

Watch Donald Trump tell Sean Hannity sick people should go to work: https://twitter.com/atrupar/status/1235411751950221312

Trump Complains About Fox News on Hannity: ‘I Think They’re Trying to Be Very Politically Correct’

President Donald Trump ripped into Fox News in an interview Wednesday night with Fox News primetime host Sean Hannity — citing “difficulties” with the cable news giant.

Early on in the 45-minute phone interview, Trump went on an unprovoked riff against Fox News after Hannity asked about Joe Biden’s gaffes.

“Well, look, I don’t want to be too critical, I’ve never seen anything like it, to be honest, and I’m sure that the Democrats are saying the same thing,” Trump said. “But they would rather have him than Bernie [Sanders], and Bernie doesn’t make too many gaffes, but Bernie has his own difficulties.”

The president pivoted to blast the press.

“But the way they push, you know, the media is all on their side, when I say all, all but a little bit, including yourselves and some of the folks on Fox,” Trump told Hannity.

Trump went on to list a few personalities who support him, including radio kingpin Rush Limbaugh (whom Trump incorrectly cited as working at Fox News), Fox News host Mark Levin, and Fox Business host Lou Dobbs. But then he also referenced “little difficulties” with the network at large.

“You have some great people, you have Rush, who is doing I hear really well, much better and Mark Levin. We have a lot of support. You would be amazed, we have a lot of support. The great Lou Dobbs, so many people we have as supporters out of just our Fox News, which, you know, I have my own little difficulties with, if you want to know the truth.”

Trump ripped the network for featuring “inappropriate” people on its air who say “very, very false things.”

The commander-in-chief then doled out the highest of insults among conservatives, billing the network an outfit looking to be “politically correct.”

“They put people on I think are inappropriate and say very, very false things and people don’t challenge them. I think they’re trying to be very politically correct or ‘fair and balanced,’ right, is the term.”

Hannity responded with a chuckle and the affirmative “yeah.”

“But I think they hurt themselves if you want to know the truth,” Trump concluded.

[Mediaite]

Media

https://www.mediamatters.org/donald-trump/donald-trump-praises-fox-hosts-he-considers-supporters-complains-some-are-too-fair-and

Trump Unleashes More Coronavirus Misinformation on National Television

As health experts sound the alarm over the Trump administration’s woefully inadequate response to United States’ unfolding coronavirus outbreak, President Trump continued to push misinformation about the virus while offering dangerous public safety advice.

The president cast doubt on the World Health Organization’s estimate that the global death rate from the virus is 3.4 percent, telling Sean Hannity on Wednesday that “I think the 3.4 percent is really a false number—and this is just my hunch—but based on a lot of conversations with a lot of people that do this because a lot of people will have this and it’s very mild. They’ll get better very rapidly, they don’t even see a doctor, they don’t even call a doctor. You never hear about those people.”

He continued by referring to the coronavirus as the “coronaflu.” Later in the phone appearance, Trump appeared to suggest it was fine for people sick with the coronavirus to go to work, once again undermining the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s urgings that the infected should self-isolate and limit outside contact.

“If we have thousands or hundreds of thousands of people that get better just by sitting around and even going to work—some of them go to work—but they get better. Then when you do have a death, like you’ve had in the state of Washington, like you had one in California, I believe you had one in New York,” Trump said. (New York has not yet reported any deaths from the coronavirus.)

It was the latest in a string of public appearances by the president where he seemed to attempt to minimize the virus’s threat even as documented cases in the US steadily rise. Hours before phoning into Hannity’s Fox News program, Trump debuted a new strategy to combat mounting criticism of his administration’s actions, by falsely claiming that former President Barack Obama, who left office more than 1100 days ago, is to blame for the current delay in testing for the virus. “The Obama administration made a decision on testing that turned out to be very detrimental to what we’re doing,” Trump claimed at a White House meeting on Wednesday. “We undid that decision a few days ago so that the testing can take place in a much more rapid and accurate fashion.”

[Mother Jones]

Trump praises Sammy’s Mexican Grill after owners slammed for supporting him

President Trump on Sunday gave a shoutout to a Mexican food grill in Arizona after the owners were hit with a wave of backlash for appearing at a rally for the president in Phoenix.

“The food is GREAT at Sammy’s Mexican Grill in Phoenix, Arizona,” the president tweeted. “Congratulations to Betty & Jorge Rivas on doing such a wonderful job. I will try hard to stop by the next time I am in Phoenix. Support Sammy’s!”

The owners of Sammy’s grill, Jorge and Betty Rivas, are both naturalized U.S. citizens and unapologetic Trump supporters. They said the latest backlash for appearing at the Feb. 19 rally was only the latest in attacks since they came out in support of the president in 2016.

“We have never denied or [tried to] hide from what we stand for or what we believe,” Mr. Rivas told “Fox & Friends” earlier Sunday. “And we’ve been active. We’ve been going to President Trump’s rally in Phoenix and going to other meetings where Republicans meet.”

“We know who we are,” he said. “We know that it’s important for us to stay out there, to say what we feel. I personally feel that for me, staying quiet, saying, ‘Oh I’m not going to express my opinion because they might attack me,’ that would go against what I believe. That would go against what America stands for.”

Mr. Rivas said that despite receiving an onslaught of negative reviews and threats, their business had started picking up in recent days.

[Washington Times]

Trump lashes out at Fox News for new poll showing him losing to all the Democratic candidates

President Donald Trump lashed out on Friday at the network that normally covers him so favorably over a new national poll that shows him losing hypothetical head-to-head popular vote matchups against all six of the top Democratic presidential candidates.

“Worst Polls, just like in 2016 when they were so far off the mark, are the @FoxNews Polls,” Trump tweeted on Friday morning.

That tweet came 37 minutes after Fox News displayed a graphic on the air highlighting the results of a new network poll that shows Joe Biden, Bernie Sanders, and Mike Bloomberg beating him handily, with Elizabeth Warren, Pete Buttigieg, and Amy Klobuchar leading him by spreads that are within the margin of error.

As is the case with most everything Fox News broadcasts, Trump was apparently watching. And he apparently didn’t appreciate the reminder about it not in fact being the case that a majority of the country loves him.

His attack on Fox News serves as a reminder that despite a rough-and-tumble and still-uncertain Democratic primary, he’s eminently beatable in November.

While it’s obviously possible for Trump to repeat what he did in 2016 and win the election even if he loses the popular vote, there’s almost no chance of him losing the popular vote by a deficit of this magnitude against Biden, Sanders, or Bloomberg and still prevailing in the Electoral College. (Some other polls have been more favorable to Trump’s odds.)

And considering the poll was conducted during the early part of a week that saw a historic stock market slide amid concerns about the coronavirus pandemic and the Trump administration’s capacity for dealing with it, there’s reason to believe the president’s standing isn’t improving anytime soon. Of course, we’re still months from the general election, and it’s worth remembering that Hillary Clinton also had a healthy lead over Trump at this point in the 2016 election cycle.

Still, the poll is mostly bad news for Trump. But instead of doing some self-reflection, he’s doing what he’s in the habit of doing and attacking the messenger.

[Vox]

Trump Now Wants ‘Bad Ratings’ Fox Anchor Neil Cavuto Fired After Featuring Guest Who Was Mean

President Donald Trump attacked Fox News anchor Neil Cavuto on Friday, mocking his “very bad ratings” and “Fake guests.”

“So @TeamCavuto has very bad ratings on @foxnews with his Fake guests like A.B. Stoddard and others that still haven’t figured it all out,” wrote Trump in a Twitter post. “Will he get the same treatment as his friend Shepherd Smith, who also suffered from the ratings drought?”

President Trump previously called out Cavuto on Thursday for hosting a guest who was critical of his debate skills.

“Could somebody at @foxnews please explain to Trump hater A.B. Stoddard (zero talent!) and @TeamCavuto, that I won every one of my debates, from beginning to end,” Trump wrote on Twitter. “Check the polls taken immediately after the debates. The debates got me elected. Must be Fox Board Member Paul Ryan!”

President Trump also attacked Fox News during his Thursday campaign rally in Colorado Springs.

“They had a crazy person on today, on one of the Fox shows,” Trump said. “Fox doesn’t treat us the way they used to.”

“Their loser shows are the ones that don’t like Trump,” he continued, adding, “How’s Shep Smith doing by the way?”

Shepard Smith, whose coverage drew the president’s ire on many occasions, left the network in October after 23 years on air.

Fox Business host Trisha Regan shot back at the president for calling out Cavuto, saying, “[Cavuto] is someone who started this network, Fox Business, and someone who is the utmost journalist and always fair… I can tell you that about Neil. He is a fair person, a fair guy, and a good man.”

“So I’m disappointed that the president said those things,” she declared. “Because Neil Cavuto is one guy who just doesn’t deserve it.”

[Mediaite]

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