The Top 20 Lies About Trump's Response to the COVID-19 Pandemic

AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster

Regardless of how the election turns out, the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the result will be discussed for many years. Media disinformation has made the pandemic a liability for Trump politically, and Joe Biden has not considered himself above politicizing the pandemic for political gain. With the media’s help, Joe Biden has managed to poll better than Trump when it comes to handling the pandemic, even though Joe Biden hasn’t suggested doing anything different than has been done already by Trump.

The weaponizing of the COVID-19 pandemic against Donald Trump has been shameful. The media, the Democrats, and Joe Biden’s campaign don’t care about lying to the American people, they just want Trump defeated. There have been many, many falsehoods perpetuated by the media during this pandemic, and I’ve compiled the top twenty below to demonstrate just how low Trump’s enemies have gone to try to oust him.

20. Trump turned down testing kits from WHO

A Politico hit piece from early March claimed that the World Health Organization offered the United States coronavirus testing kits, but Trump refused to accept them. This claim spread quickly, and Joe Biden even claimed “The World Health Organization offered the testing kits that they have available and to give it to us now. We refused them. We did not want to buy them,” during a Democratic primary debate back in March.

It wasn’t true. “No discussions occurred between WHO and CDC about WHO providing COVID-19 tests to the United States,” WHO spokeswoman Margaret Harris explained at the time. “This is consistent with experience since the United States does not ordinarily rely on WHO for reagents or diagnostic tests because of sufficient domestic capacity.” According to WHO, its priority was to send testing kits to “countries with the weakest health systems.”

So, why did testing get off to a slow start in the United States? Ellie Bufkin at our sister site Townhall noted that “Testing in the United States was fraught with difficulty in large part due to the slow approval by the Food and Drug Administration to allow testing kits developed by private companies outside of the government-controlled CDC to be used at a local or national level. Those FDA policies are consistent with the Obama Administration’s response to H1N1 and Ebola in 2009 and 2014 respectively.”

19. Trump downplayed the mortality rate of the coronavirus

In early March, the World Health Organization said that 3.4 percent of coronavirus patients had died from the disease. “Globally, about 3.4% of reported COVID-19 (the disease spread by the virus) cases have died,” WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said at a briefing. “By comparison, seasonal flu generally kills far fewer than 1% of those infected.”

Trump said this number was false, as the mortality rate was actually much lower because their number didn’t take into account unreported cases. In an interview with Sean Hannity on March 4, Trump challenged WHO’s number. “Well, I think the 3.4% is really a false number,” Trump said, asserting that the actual mortality rate is “way under 1 percent.”

And Trump was right. The mortality rate of COVID-19 has been consistently going down. By May, the CDC estimated the overall mortality rate for COVID-19 to be .26 percent. Trump got criticized for “downplaying” the coronavirus. Where is the criticism for the so-called experts who greatly overestimated the mortality rate in order to spark fear and panic? For example, MSNBC contributor Dr. Joseph Fair told a panel on the network that up to 20 percent of the U.S. population might die from the coronavirus.

18. Obama did a better job with H1N1

The common refrain from the left when comparisons are made between the government’s responses to H1N1 and COVID-19 is that only 12,469 died from H1N1, according to the CDC. But this leaves out important context. The CDC estimates that in the United States alone between April 12, 2009, and April 10, 2010, there were nearly 61 million cases of H1N1.

Based on these numbers, H1N1 had a mortality rate of .02 percent. According to the CDC’s May estimate, the coronavirus has an overall mortality rate of .4 percent for symptomatic cases (or .26 percent if you include asymptomatic cases) meaning that the coronavirus is 13-20 times more deadly than H1N1.

The coronavirus is not only magnitudes more deadly than H1N1, but also more infectious. According to a study from Emerging Infectious Diseases, COVID-19 has a median R0 value (a mathematical term for how contagious a disease is) of 5.7, while H1N1 had an R0 value between 1.4 and 1.6. So COVID-19 is nearly four times more infectious and 13-20 times more deadly than H1N1. This is a point that President Trump has brought up during the presidential debates.

Ron Klain, who was Biden’s chief of staff at the time and is currently advising his campaign, says it was mere luck that H1N1 wasn’t more deadly.  “It is purely a fortuity that this isn’t one of the great mass casualty events in American history,” Klain said of H1N1 in 2019. “It had nothing to do with us doing anything right. It just had to do with luck. If anyone thinks that this can’t happen again, they don’t have to go back to 1918, they just have to go back to 2009, 2010, and imagine a virus with a different lethality, and you can just do the math on that.”

Had H1N1 had been as infectious and as deadly as COVID-19 it absolutely would have been a mass casualty event.

17. Trump told governors they were “on their own”

In a tweet sent last week, New York Times editorial board member Mara Gay claimed that during a conference call with governors about the coronavirus pandemic, President Trump told them they were “on their own” in getting the equipment they needed: “‘Respirators, ventilators, all of the equipment — try getting it yourselves,’ Mr. Trump told the governors during the conference call, a recording of which was shared with The New York Times.”

She lied. Ms. Gay deliberately misrepresented Trump’s words. Trump actually told governors on the call: “Respirators, ventilators, all of the equipment — try getting it yourselves. We will be backing you, but try getting it yourselves. Point of sales, much better, much more direct if you can get it yourself.”

The false narrative that Trump had told governors they were on their own, essentially to expect no help from the federal government, spread like wildfire.

16.  Trump “dissolved” the WH pandemic response office

Two days after Trump declared the coronavirus a national emergency, the Washington Post published an opinion piece by Elizabeth Cameron, who ran the White House pandemic office under Obama, alleging that Trump had dissolved the office in 2018. She claimed that because of this, “the federal government’s slow response to the coronavirus isn’t a surprise.”

This claim spread like wildfire, even though it was completely false. Days after WaPo ran the piece, they published another article by Tim Morrison, former senior director for counterproliferation and biodefense on the National Security Council, who debunked the allegation made by Cameron and other former Obama administration officials.

What good is there in spreading false information, as Elizabeth Cameron did? “This is Washington. It’s an election year,” Morrison laments. “Officials out of power want back into power after November. But the middle of a worldwide health emergency is not the time to be making tendentious accusations.”

15. Trump ignored early intel briefings on a possible pandemic

The Washington Post was the source of another bogus claim when they reported that intelligence agencies warned about a possible pandemic back in January and February and that Trump “failed to take action that might have slowed the spread of the pathogen.”

It was fake news. The Trump administration had begun aggressively addressing the coronavirus threat immediately after China reported the discovery of the coronavirus to the World Health Organization. In addition to implementing various precautionary travel restrictions, the administration fast-tracked the use of testing kits, set up a Coronavirus Task Force, and implemented a travel ban with China, several weeks before WHO declared the coronavirus a pandemic.

In actuality, it was Trump’s critics who weren’t taking the coronavirus situation seriously. Joe Biden even accused Trump of “fearmongering” and “xenophobia” for his travel ban, only to flip-flop on the issue months later.

14. Trump cut funding to the CDC & NIH

This is a lie that goes back all the way to February. In fact, both Joe Biden and Mike Bloomberg (who hadn’t dropped out of the Democratic primary yet) accused President Trump of cutting funding to critical health agencies during a primary debate. “There’s nobody here to figure out what the hell we should be doing. And he’s defunded — he’s defunded Centers for Disease Control, CDC, so we don’t have the organization we need. This is a very serious thing,” Bloomberg claimed.

The Obama-Biden administration “increased the budget of the CDC. We increased the NIH budget. … He’s wiped all that out. … He cut the funding for the entire effort,” Biden claimed back in February.

They were both wrong.

According to an Associated Press fact check, proposed budget cuts never happened, and funding increased. They acknowledged that some public health experts believe that a bigger concern than White House budgets “is the steady erosion of a CDC grant program for state and local public health emergency preparedness,” but, they note, “that decline was set in motion by a congressional budget measure that predates Trump.”

The AP also noted that “The public health system has a playbook to follow for pandemic preparation — regardless of who’s president or whether specific instructions are coming from the White House. Those plans were put into place in anticipation of another flu pandemic, but are designed to work for any respiratory-borne disease.”

13. Trump fired a government vaccine expert for questioning the effectiveness of hydroxychloroquine

Back in April, the New York Times published a story claiming President Trump fired Dr. Rick Bright, a leading government vaccine expert, because Bright questioned hydroxychloroquine’s effectiveness in treating COVID-19. The narrative was quickly spread throughout the mainstream media, but, as PJM’s Tyler O’Neil noted at the time, “Bright championed the use of hydroxychloroquine for coronavirus,” and was actually transferred to the NIH, not fired, and was a champion of the controversial drug. “Dr. Bright, who served as director of the Department of Health and Human Services’ Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (BARDA), specifically asked the FDA to issue an Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) for the emergency use of ‘oral formulations of chloroquine phosphate and hydroxychloroquine sulfate for the treatment of 2019 coronavirus disease (COVID-19).’” Bright also celebrated the FDA’s approval of hydroxychloroquine in internal emails published by Politico.

Bright may not have been happy about the transfer, but the bogus claim that he was fired for his opposition to hydroxychloroquine appears to have been made up by his lawyers, who just happened to be Debra Katz and Lisa Banks, Christine Blasey Ford’s lawyers during the Brett Kavanaugh hearings.

12. Trump wanted to reopen schools in spite of science against it

Over the summer, White House Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany reiterated Trump’s call to reopen schools in the fall, pointing out that it’s “very damaging to our children” to be stuck at home. McEnany noted that other countries had successfully reopened schools and that the United States was “the outlier” by not doing so. She also reiterated that “The science is very clear on this,” that “the risk of critical illness from COVID is far less for children than that of seasonal flu.”

“The science is on our side here, and we encourage for localities and states to just simply follow the science, open our schools,” McEnany continued. “It’s very damaging to our children: There is a lack of reporting of abuse; there’s mental depressions that are not addressed; suicidal ideations that are not addressed when students are not in school. Our schools are extremely important, they’re essential, and they must reopen.”

Yet the media focused on a single sentence, taken out of context, to imply that Trump wanted to reopen schools in spite of the science. “The science should not stand in the way of this,” McEnany said, right before adding, “and as Dr. Scott Atlas said — I thought this was a good quote — ‘Of course, we can [do it]. Everyone else in the…Western world, our peer nations are doing it. We are the outlier here.’”

It was obvious that McEnany never meant to say or to imply that schools should reopen despite science saying it isn’t safe. She was arguing the exact opposite, but NBC News, the New York Times, The Guardian, PBS, the Daily Beast, the Washington Post, and many others deliberately took her out of context in their headlines. Even the CDC director Dr. Robert Redfield said it is “in the public health interest” to reopen schools for K-12 students.

11. Trump ignored experts by not shutting down the country earlier

Joe Biden has repeatedly attempted to blame President Trump for America’s coronavirus deaths because he didn’t shut down the country earlier than he did.

“We didn’t have to have over 6 million people contract COVID, over 186,000 people dead and climbing,” Biden said back in September. “It’s been pointed out by the University of Columbia Law School that if he had acted just one week earlier, 37,000 more people would have been alive. If he had acted two weeks earlier, 51,000. Maybe 31 and 57 or 51, but the point is over 80,000 people would still be alive.”

The World Health Organization didn’t even declare COVID-19 a pandemic until March 11. The next day, President Trump declared a national emergency. By then, there were only about 1,300 confirmed cases in the United States.

When President Trump released social-distancing guidelines on March 16, there were fewer than 3,800 confirmed cases in the United States.

Joe Biden has even claimed the country should have been closed down a month earlier than it was. But if that were true, why was Biden still holding rallies? In fact, Biden held campaign rallies on March 2, 3, 7, 9, 10 — all during the period he claimed the country should have already been shut down. Biden also delivered a speech in Pennsylvania four days after the state had declared a state of emergency. Despite the fact that Biden was holding campaign rallies into March, Biden claimed, “[Trump] didn’t listen to guys like me back in January saying we’d have a problem, an epidemic was on the way.” Biden was lying, and his actions prove this.

On February 16, a month prior to Trump’s social-distancing guidelines being issued, there were only 15 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the United States. No one was advocating for the country to be shut down, not Joe Biden, not the experts, not even Congress. During this same period of time that Biden said the country should have already been shut down, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi toured San Francisco’s Chinatown section and told Americans that “everything is fine” and “all is well,” and encouraged Americans to shop and eat there. “Come to Chinatown,” she said. “We just want everybody not to be afraid to come to Chinatown.” Pelosi also expressed confidence in the government’s response to the coronavirus. “I have confidence in Dr. Fauci at the National Institutes of Health, who has even further confidence in what we’re doing,” Pelosi told reporters.

In addition to this, one of the most significant actions taken by Trump, the travel ban with China, was actually opposed by Joe Biden and Trump’s critics on the left. Unfortunately for them, WHO experts admitted Trump’s actions saved lives in the United States.

Fox News contributor Liz Peek noted back in February, “Even before a single case of the virus erupted organically in our country […] and even as the administration had acted preemptively and effectively to keep virus carriers out of our country, Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., former New York City Mayor Mike Bloomberg and others were eager to stoke fear and blame Donald Trump.”

In short, no one was pushing for shutting down the country before COVID-19 was declared a worldwide pandemic by the World Health Organization. Not Congress, not Biden, not even the experts.

10. Trump is to blame for the economic impact of the coronavirus

As expected, Democrats and the media want the public to blame Trump for the current state of the economy, which has been decimated by the coronavirus shutdowns. Joe Biden in particular has been making this a theme of his campaign. The reason they’re blaming the situation on Trump, of course, is that the economy was doing incredibly well prior to the shutdowns, and that fact was the most prominent narrative of Trump’s reelection campaign. After years of economic malaise under Barack Obama, President Trump actually delivered on an economic recovery that could actually be felt by most Americans.

But then the pandemic happened, and things changed. The economic situation we are experiencing is entirely because of the shutdowns, and, as Andy Puzder, a senior fellow at the Pepperdine University School of Public Policy, noted, “the economic shutdown in the U.S. was bipartisan, just as shutdowns around the world had the support of multiple political parties.”

“Governors in the U.S. from both parties shut down their states’ economies in response to guidance from nonpartisan public health experts,” Puzder continued. “The point was to combat the spread of the coronavirus, reduce its impact on our health care system, and protect the health and lives of the American people.”

Both Democrats and Republicans knew the shutdowns would have economic consequences, but most deemed the tradeoffs worth the costs. As expected, we are now experiencing those economic consequences in terms of high unemployment and diminished growth.

That makes it particularly disturbing that Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden is attempting to blame President Trump for the bipartisan shutdown’s long-anticipated economic consequences. Reacting to the decline in second-quarter GDP, the former vice president said, “The depth of economic devastation our nation is experiencing is not an act of God, it’s a failure of presidential leadership.”

Further undermining the argument is that Biden claimed the country should have been shut down earlier than it was. Biden can’t simultaneously blame Trump for the economic impact of the shutdown while also supporting those shutdowns and claiming they should have been implemented earlier.

9. Trump was going to deny aid to sanctuary states

Back in April, the media went into a frenzy following remarks from President Trump allegedly threatening to withhold coronavirus aid to states with sanctuary cities. Spoiler alert: he didn’t.

Here’s what happened.

Trump was asked by a reporter about giving aid to states as part of an effort to stimulate the economy during the pandemic. Trump replied, “I think there’s a big difference with a state that lost money because of COVID and a state that’s been run very badly for 25 years. There’s a big difference, in my opinion. And, you know, we’d have to talk about things like payroll tax cuts. We’d have to talk about things like sanctuary cities, as an example.”

Trump added, “But we’re certainly open to talking, but it would really have to be COVID-related, not related for mismanagement over a long time — over a long period of time.”

“And you’re willing to make that distinction — that much of a distinction?” the reporter asked. “I can only imagine what some governors would say.”

“Well, it’s a very simple distinction to make,” Trump replied. “We’re not looking to do a bailout for a state that’s been — it’s unfair to — it’s unfair to many of the states, most of the states that have done such a good job. Okay?”

Trump was quite clearly indicating that he wanted to give aid for COVID-19 relief rather than hand out “blank checks” to poorly managed states and cities exploiting the coronavirus pandemic to get bailed out. While some states have been hit hard economically because of the coronavirus, others have been mismanaged for years. For example, a couple of years ago, Illinois was said to be on the path to bankruptcy. Should the government bail out Illinois for being so poorly managed? Other states with financial issues that predate the coronavirus could be looking at the pandemic as a quick fix to their financial problems, and it’s quite obvious that Trump doesn’t want to enable these poorly-run states.

8. There was a ventilator shortage

Desperate for narratives, the mainstream media tried all sorts of angles to make President Trump’s response to the coronavirus seem inefficient. One angle they tried was to claim there was a shortage of ventilators and personal protective equipment (PPE). Governor Cuomo claimed New York needed 40,000 ventilators and accused Trump of letting New Yorkers die when he did not provide them. Connecticut Governor Ned Lamont claimed that his state was on its own because the Strategic National Stockpile was depleted of medical supplies and PPE.

The Strategic National Stockpile was lacking in PPE, but the reason for that can be traced back to Barack Obama, who depleted the stockpile of N95 respirator masks during the 2009 H1N1 pandemic and never restocked it.

When asked about the stockpile, White House Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany explained, “We refilled that stockpile. We got the N-95 masks out — ventilators are another good example, not a single American died for lack of a ventilator — a hundred thousand ventilators in a hundred days, three-times what is produced in the average year. Three-times the amount of N95 respirators our health care industry uses.”

“We have delivered,” she continued. “We have cleaned up the mess that was very clearly left by President Obama and we got that out.”

The Trump administration should be commended for cleaning up Obama’s mess at the same time it delivered unprecedented amounts of equipment for states in need during the pandemic. Cuomo, who wanted 40,000 ventilators, ended up with about 6,000, and that was more than he actually needed; he eventually started giving them to other states who needed them more. In fact, the ventilator shortage was another politicized hoax, as Mayor de Blasio was blaming Trump for not getting him the ventilators he needed at the same time Governor Cuomo was giving ventilators away to other states.

7. Trump “muzzled” Dr. Fauci

In late February, the New York Times claimed that the Trump administration had “muzzled” Dr. Anthony Fauci, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), by preventing him from speaking publicly about the coronavirus without approval from the administration.

It wasn’t true. But the claim was echoed throughout the mainstream media, and ultimately was brought up in a press briefing. Trump was asked directly about it and he let Dr. Fauci clear it up.

“I’ve never been muzzled, ever, and I’ve been doing this since Reagan,” he said. “I’m not being muzzled by this administration.”

Despite the fact this claim was debunked, Joe Biden kept repeating it as if it were true. “And, look, right now you have this president, hasn’t allowed his scientists to speak, number one,” Biden said on ABC’s This Week a couple of days after Fauci said unequivocally he wasn’t being muzzled. “He has the vice president speaking, not the scientists who know what they’re talking about, like Fauci.”

6. Trump said people should inject bleach to cure themselves

One of the most ridiculous false claims by the media was the allegation that Trump had suggested that people should inject bleach or Lysol into their bodies to cure themselves of the coronavirus.

The false claim originated from the following exchange during the White House Coronavirus Task Force briefing on April 23, where possible treatments were discussed, including UV light treatments. Trump said, “And then I see the disinfectant, where it knocks it out in a minute. One minute. And is there a way we can do something like that, by injection inside or almost a cleaning? Because you see it gets in the lungs and it does a tremendous number on the lungs. So it would be interesting to check that. So, that you’re going to have to use medical doctors with. But it sounds — it sounds interesting to me.”

Later in the same briefing, a reporter asked, “The president mentioned the idea of cleaners, like bleach and isopropyl alcohol you mentioned. There’s no scenario that could be injected into a person, is there?”

It was Trump who replied, “It wouldn’t be through injection. We’re talking about through almost a cleaning, sterilization of an area. Maybe it works, maybe it doesn’t work. But it certainly has a big effect if it’s on a stationary object.”

It was a reporter who actually connected bleach to injections, not Trump, who made a point to correct the reporter.

5. Joe Biden warned Trump about COVID-19

Joe Biden’s primary campaign strategy has been to attack Trump’s response to the coronavirus and claim that “it didn’t have to be this way.” Biden has also dabbled with claims that he was warning the country about the virus long before Trump was. His go-to “evidence” for this is his January 27 op-ed in USA Today.

“Back in January, I wrote an article for USA Today saying we’ve got a real problem,” Biden claimed at the CNN town hall.

But, no, not really. Even Washington Post fact-checker Glenn Kessler noted back in April that Biden’s op-ed “was more of an attack on President Trump and a recollection of Obama administration steps taken against the 2014 Ebola outbreak than a detailed plan for action against a possible pandemic.”

Not only did the op-ed not contain any specific policies for combating the coronavirus, but it also panned “reactionary travel bans.” Trump would announce the travel ban with China three days after the op-ed ran, and Biden decried it as “hysterical xenophobia.”

Biden has repeatedly claimed he “sounded the alarm” and has been ahead of the curve when it comes to the coronavirus, but in reality, he’s lagged behind.

4. Trump ‘misled’ the public about COVID-19

The release of Bob Woodward’s book Rage had the usual suspects accusing President Trump of irresponsibly downplaying the COVID-19 virus, and accusing Trump of knowing the disease was “airborne” but keeping that information from the public.

This is an allegation that Biden has repeated on the campaign trail despite the fact it has been disputed by none other than Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases.

During an interview on Fox News in September, Dr. Fauci said that Trump’s public statements about the virus were no different than sentiments expressed during White House Coronavirus Task Force meetings.

“In my discussions and the discussions of other task force members with the president, we were talking about the reality of what was going on, and then we would get up in front of the press conferences … he really didn’t say anything different than we discussed when we were with him,” said Fauci. “I didn’t really see any discrepancies between what he told us and what we told him in what he ultimately came out publicly and said.”

“Did you get a sense that [President Trump] was or wasn’t playing this down?” Fox News’ John Roberts asked.

“No, no, I didn’t. I didn’t get any sense that he was distorting anything,” Fauci replied. “In my discussions with him, they were always straightforward about the concerns that we had. We related that to him. When he would go out, I’d hear him discussing the same sort of things.”

3. Trump ‘Doesn’t listen to the experts’

Another theme of the Biden campaign narrative on COVID-19 is that Joe will “listen to the experts” while Trump has not. “I think it’s important to follow the science. Listen to the experts. Do what they tell you,” Biden said.

Once again, the narrative that Trump doesn’t listen to the experts has been disputed by Dr. Fauci.

“The first and only time that Dr. [Deborah] Birx and I went in and formally made a recommendation to the president to actually have a shutdown in the sense of strong mitigation, we discussed it,” Fauci said back in April. “Obviously there would be concerns by some, and in fact, that might have some negative consequences. Nonetheless, the president listened to the recommendation.”

Trump has made no secret that he wasn’t thrilled about shutting down the strong economy he had created, but he did it. If President Trump doesn’t listen to the experts, why would he have done exactly what they told him to do?

2. The United States ‘leads the world’ in COVID-19 deaths

Every COVID-19 milestone reported by the media seems to want to paint the United States as having the worst record against the virus. “US Leads the World in Death Toll from Coronavirus with 150,000,” the Associated Press reported on July 29. Many other outlets have published similar stories over the past few months. This is obviously by design, as the media selectively uses raw numbers over per capita statistics, or ignores proper context. For example, confirmed cases have skyrocketed in the United States, but the United States is also leading the world in tests given, both in raw numbers and per capita. Naturally, case numbers for the United States are going to go up relative to other countries. Of course, I’ve always maintained that comparing countries by confirmed cases, even per capita, is not a great metric because those numbers rely so much on testing capability, which varies from country to country.

COVID-19 deaths per capita is a far more reliable metric to base a comparison on, so let’s look at the numbers as compiled by Statista.

  1. Peru (1055.51 per million)
  2. Belgium (984.67)
  3. Spain (757.04)
  4. Bolivia (756.1)
  5. Brazil 753.23)
  6. Chile (744.93)
  7. Ecuador (726.5)
  8. Mexico (711.52
  9. United States (693.86)
  10. United Kingdom (686.25)

The United States doesn’t have the highest number of deaths per capita in the world. Oh, but wait, there’s more. In the past, I’ve pointed out how Governor Cuomo botched New York’s response to the pandemic, turning New York (and more specifically, New York City) into the epicenter of the pandemic for the entire world—skewing the United States’ numbers. I’ve previously shown how the rankings change when you separate New York from the rest of the country. Let’s see how the rankings look now:

  1. New York State (1,711.93 per million)
  2. Peru (1,055.51 per million)
  3. Belgium (984.67)
  4. Spain (757.04)
  5. Bolivia (756.1)
  6. Brazil 753.23)
  7. Chile (744.93)
  8. Ecuador (726.5)
  9. Mexico (711.52)
  10. United Kingdom (686.25)

New York State comes in on top, while the rest of the United States drops out of the top ten entirely, sinking to #15 with 629.99 deaths per million. So much for “leading the world” in COVID-19 deaths.

1. Trump called the coronavirus “a hoax”

To this day Joe Biden, the left, and the media all claim Trump called the coronavirus a hoax. He said no such thing. While the country was distracted by impeachment, the Trump administration was busy addressing the coronavirus outbreak, taking various measures to limit the spread of the virus in the United States. Impeachment quickly faded, so they decided to aggressively politicize his response to the coronavirus outbreak. Joe Biden even called Trump’s travel ban with China an overreaction and accused him of trying to scare the public. “This is no time for Donald Trump’s record of hysteria and xenophobia ± hysterical xenophobia — and fearmongering to lead the way instead of science.”

President Trump responded to these allegations during a rally in South Carolina, calling the Democrats’ politicization of the coronavirus “the new hoax.” The media jumped on this line, claiming that Trump called the virus, not the Democrats’ reactions to it, a hoax. The lie spread like wildfire and Joe Biden even used the lie as a talking point on the stump. There was quite a stir when Politico’s story repeating the false claim that Trump called the virus a hoax was flagged by Facebook fact-checkers as fake news, but other fact-checkers couldn’t deny that the claim was false either.

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Matt Margolis is the author of Airborne: How The Liberal Media Weaponized The Coronavirus Against Donald Trump and the bestselling book The Worst President in History: The Legacy of Barack Obama. You can follow Matt on Twitter @MattMargolis