The deputy chief of staff for operations in the Obama administration broke down on Monday why the White House claims on President Donald Trump’s surprise Saturday visit to Walter Reed Hospital.
Jim Messina, who also was the campaign manager for Barack Obama’s 2012 re-election campaign, was interviewed Monday on MSNBC’s “The Last Word” by anchor Lawrence O’Donnell.
O’Donnell noted the note the White House physician sent to White House press secretary Stephanie Grisham:
“You know how doctors deal with physical exams,” O’Donnell said to Messina. “How does this all read to you?”
“Not great, Lawrence,” Messina replied.
“If you look at the statement, they said, routine planned visit, and then one sentence later said, because of scheduling irregularities, we did this, we wanted it all to be off the record. You can’t have both of those things be true.”
Messina found two fatal flaws in the White House argument.
“If it was a routine planned thing, you never would do it at Walter Reed — you would have done all that stuff at the White House facilities, which are state of the art and amazing,” he explained. “If it was just routine stuff, you never would have taken him out.”
“And if you were going to take him for a routine visit to Walter Reed, you would have announced it, you would have had a photo op with the troops, you would have done a bunch of things that are regular to do,” he continued.
“The second problem, Lawrence, this is the problem when you have a White House who lies about everything, is you can’t believe them about anything,” Messina said. “You just have an absolute sense that all of this is lying and when you trot out a 10 P.M. memo from a doctor, you know they’re likely worried about something, and the problem is the truth is probably that there is something nefarious going on.”
“And Jim — quickly, before we go — there is this additional element of, we have not seen the president. And when this controversy erupts, one of the first things I think you would do is say, let’s get the president on camera, let’s show him, let’s show that he’s doing just fine,” O’Donnell said. “And Donald Trump inviting in the cameras is something they do all the time, but not since he’s gone to the hospital.”
“Yeah, it’s his favorite thing in the world, him being on TV is what he loves more than breathing, so the easiest thing would be to trot him out at the White House and do a quick photo op,” Messina said. “Anything would be easy.”
“And why didn’t they do that?” he wondered.
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White House Issues Letter From Trump’s Doctor on His Taking Hydroxychloroquine That Doesn’t Actually Say He’s Taking It
Once again the Trump White House is releasing very creatively-crafted information surrounding the President’s health. On Monday, after President Donald Trump claimed he is taking the anti-malaria drug he touted for weeks as a cure for coronavirus, hydroxychloroquine, the White House has released a letter that appears to try to suggest the President wasn’t lying, and that he is taking the dangerous drug.
But the letter, from Physician to the President Sean P. Conley, does not actually say Trump is taking the drug.
“As has been previously reported, two weeks ago one of the President’s support staff tested positive for COVID-19. The President is in very good health and remains symptom free. He receives regular COVID-19 testing, all negative to date,” the letter begins.
“After numerous discussions he and I had regarding the evidence for and against the use of hydroxychloroquine, we concluded the benefit from treatment outweighed the relative risks.”
“In consultation with our inter-agency partners and subject matter experts around the country, I continue to monitor the myriad studies investigating potential COVID-19 therapies, and I anticipate employing the same shared medical decision making based on the evidence at hand in the future.”
Nowhere does it actually say President Trump is taking hydroxychloroquine:
‘I Never Said It’: Trump Promised 5 Million Tests Per Day ‘Very Soon’ – 24 Hours Later He Denies Ever Saying It (Video)
President Donald Trump on Tuesday bragged the United States would be testing five million people for coronavirus “very soon,” but just 24 hours later he is totally denying having ever said that.
“Well I don’t know where it came up,” Trump responded to a reporter asking him about his remarks just one day earlier. “Everyone was saying, ‘You said there’d be five.’ That was a study that came out. Somebody came out with a study of five million people,” Trump told reporters in the Oval Office Wednesday.
“Do I think we will? I think we will, but I never said it,” Trump insisted.
Here’s Trump on Wednesday denying he ever said the U.S. would be testing five million people a day, something experts say is necessary to protect the nation when it re-opens.
Trump repeats his lie that the United States is doing more coronavirus testing than all other countries combined, which is not even close to true pic.twitter.com/Krx42pYSx6
— Aaron Rupar (@atrupar) April 29, 2020
Here’s President Trump on Tuesday, just one day ago, confirming to a reporter that the U.S, will be testing five million people per day “very soon.”
Trump says the US is “getting very close” to conducting 5 million tests per day (the US is currently conducting about 200,000 tests per day, so this is a lie) pic.twitter.com/1IrUboariP
— Aaron Rupar (@atrupar) April 28, 2020
“You’re saying you can surpass five million tests per day?” the reporter asks.
“Oh, we’re going to be there very soon,” Trump replies. “If you look at the numbers it could be that we’re getting very close,” he adds. That is a lie.
Over the past 10 days the U.S. has increased testing dramatically, but is only testing between 147,000 to 314,000 per day – not even 10% of five million per day, not even close.
‘A Great Success Story’: Kushner Says Trump Team Is ‘Doing a Lot of Things Right’ as COVID-19 Cases Pass One Million
Jared Kushner says the Trump administration is “doing a lot of things right” and has created a “great success story” in how its handled the coronavirus pandemic, just one day after the United Stated passed the one million mark in COVID-19 cases, and is rapidly approaching 60,000 deaths.
“The federal government rose to the challenge, and this is a great success story, and I think that, that’s really what needs to be told” Kushner, a Senior Advisor to the President, told “Fox & Friends” Wednesday.
“We’re on the other side of the medical aspect of this and I think that we’ve achieved all the different milestones that are needed,” Kushner added, suggesting the U.S. has flattened the curve, the worst of the pandemic is over, and there’s little to no more work to be done, all of which is false.
Responding to a question on why there is no national strategy coming from the Trump Administration, Kushner replied: “We’ve been very busy doing.”
“We released the strategy document earlier this week, it was an 8-step plan, and seven of those steps have been completed,” Kushner added.
Kushner appears to be referring to the White House Testing Overview, which was released Monday. It isn’t a plan, but rather a public relations document that is not designed to provide a plan on battling coronavirus. It is designed to re-open the country for business. It also calls the federal government the “supplier of last resort.”
Jared Kushner, the morning after we hit 1 million cases and more deaths than in the Vietnam War:
“We’re on the other side of the medical aspect of this. The federal government rose to the challenge, and this is a great success story.”pic.twitter.com/sRGDR4rNsl
— Ian Sams (@IanSams) April 29, 2020
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