Donald Trump’s Coronavirus Press Conference Was a Debacle

Gripas Yuri/Abaca via ZUMA

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Like many of you, I cringed my way through President Trump’s coronavirus press conference a couple of hours ago. There are so many takeaways that they’re hard to list. Trump claimed that a Google triage website was either ready now or just about ready—it was a little hard to tell—but then Google followed up afterward with a tweet saying that development was in “early stages.”¹ Trump spent upwards of half his time congratulating himself for the great job he’s done and then blaming all our problems on bureaucratic tangles he inherited from Obama. He invited business people to the podium and then shook all their hands—precisely what doctors have told us not to do. He said drive-up testing stations were available, or would be soon, or something, without any indication of when and where they would be. The coronavirus, he said, would soon “wash through” and everyone would come out the better for it. And he hardly even mentioned any of the following:

  • Don’t shake hands.
  • Practice social distancing.
  • Avoid large crowds.
  • Cancel book clubs and other unimportant meetings.
  • Wash your hands.
  • Don’t touch your face.
  • Etc.

Trump had a nationally televised stage to urge good habits on people, but he didn’t. It’s always all about him. Everything is always about him. It’s unbelievable.

¹Actually, it’s worse than that: it will initially direct people only to pilot sites for testing in the Bay Area. “In all,” says The Verge, “the difference between the reality of what is being built and what was promised during the press conference is very large.”

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DEMOCRACY DOES NOT EXIST...

without free and fair elections, a vigorous free press, and engaged citizens to reclaim power from those who abuse it.

In this election year unlike any other—against a backdrop of a pandemic, an economic crisis, racial reckoning, and so much daily crazy—Mother Jones' journalism is driven by one simple question: Will America will move closer to, or further from, justice and equity in the years to come?

If you're able to, please join us in this mission with a donation today. Our reporting right now is focused on voting rights and election security, corruption, disinformation, racial and gender equity, and the climate crisis. We can’t do it without the support of readers like you, and we need to give it everything we've got between now and November. Thank you.

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