President Trump was praised on Tuesday for maintaining a “somber” tone while reading directly from his prepared statements during the first White House Coronavirus Task Force briefing in weeks. But day two of the revived exercise did not live up to the hype. While Tuesday’s event featured the usual grab-bag of factual errors, Wednesday’s briefing was chock full of Trump’s self-promotional false-claims – which is what caused news networks to stop airing the briefings in their entirety in April. Below are some of the more egregious statements made by the president on Wednesday.
Trump said he’s done more for Black Americans than any president – with the “possible exception” of Lincoln
The successor to the nation’s first Black president appears to have forgotten about his tax cuts (which have disproportionately hurt African-American households), as well as the entire Lyndon B. Johnson administration.
Wednesday was quite a day for ahistorical claims on race by 2020 candidates: In a town hall, Joe Biden said Trump was the “first” racist president, overlooking the 12 American executives who have personally owned slaves, among other noted bigots-in-chief.
Trump made incoherent claims about the virus and the border
While Mexico is currently experiencing the fourth-worst outbreak in the world, it’s situation pales in comparison to that in the United States — particularly in border states like California, Arizona, and Texas.
Trump blamed Black Lives Matter protests for the summer surge in cases
Though several cities still holding massive demonstrations have not experienced an uptick in cases, the president continued to blame the outdoor events for the wave of new coronavirus outbreaks – which largely traced back to premature reopenings.
Trump appeared to misrepresent his relationship with public health experts
When asked why public-health officials like Anthony Fauci and Deborah Birx were not present for the renewed press briefings, the president said that the experts were “giving me all — everything they know — and I’m giving the information to you.” Though the circumstances may have changed, on July 10, Dr. Fauci said he hadn’t met personally with Trump in two months.
Trump promoted his golf course while denying allegations that he’s been promoting his golf course
Last night, the New York Times reported that, in 2018, the president attempted to pressure the British Open into hosting its lucrative golf tournament at the Trump Turnberry resort in Scotland, a clear ethical breach and a potential violation of the emoluments clause of the Constitution. Responding to the allegation, the president couldn’t help but speak fondly of his “highly respected course,” which he reportedly inflated the property value of.