President Donald Trump likes to be optimistic in the face of extreme adversity, something the media and Democrats have interpreted as downplaying the seriousness of the coronavirus.
During an interview on a New York Times podcast released on Thursday, however, White House coronavirus task force leader Dr. Anthony Fauci shut that narrative down cold.
Trump “always understood”
During a press conference on February 26, Trump said of the U.S. response to coronavirus, “And again, when you have 15 people, and the 15 within a couple of days is going to be down to close to zero, that’s a pretty good job we’ve done.”
That quote will haunt him for many years to come.
It was not a dismissive tone by any means, but travel from China had been shut down and Trump was hopeful that we had cut off the source of the virus before it could hit us.
Every expert around was still saying that America itself was at low risk. Even so, the media took those words to mean that Trump was not taking the threat seriously.
The facts tell a different story, but facts matter very little these days.
Dr. Fauci, widely considered to be the nation’s foremost expert on infectious diseases, tried to put a halt to that narrative, stating, “I think he always understood the seriousness of it. Right now as the numbers are becoming crystal clear, he himself is articulating an awareness of that seriousness.”
“But from the beginning, he always took it seriously,” Fauci continued. “The President has his own style, that’s obvious to the American public. When I speak to him about issues that are substantive he listens.”
Damage is done
Be it fair or not, the damage against Trump is done because people like Fauci did not come forward quickly enough to dispel the media narrative.
It would have been nice to hear Dr. Fauci be a bit more aggressive in opening up about what happened behind the scenes in the early days of the virus so that the media didn’t have ammunition against Trump.
The mainstream media had a meltdown about Trump shutting down travel to and from China on January 31st — long before any state governors took action to stop the spread — but their misinformation campaign has the nation believing that he did absolutely nothing.