President Donald Trump decided to “honor” Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. late Monday afternoon by dragging his vice president to Washington, D.C.’s MLK Memorial. The two top executives spent all of 30 seconds there, on Martin Luther King Day, without saying a word. They then left. Both were back in the White House ten minutes later.
CNN White House Correspondent Kaitlan Collins documented the curious event:
President Trump and Vice President Pence just made an unannounced trip to the Martin Luther King Jr. memorial in Washington. They stood in front of it for approximately 30 seconds with their heads bowed before turning and leaving without making remarks.
— Kaitlan Collins (@kaitlancollins) January 20, 2020
Reuters’ Steve Holland posted this photo of Trump and Pence:
President Trump and Vice President Pence at the MLK Memorial pic.twitter.com/lH4vzsKTOg
— Steve Holland (@steveholland1) January 20, 2020
The Hill posted video of Trump and Pence getting booed and cheered.
— The Hill (@thehill) January 20, 2020
By any standard Monday’s visit was astonishingly short. Last year Trump and Pence made the same visit – and stayed just 94 seconds.
Trump and Pence spent a whopping 94 seconds at the MLK memorial on MLK day in 2019 — and never uttered his name pic.twitter.com/GqOVbqcIHn
— NowThis (@nowthisnews) January 20, 2020
Earlier Monday Trump “honored” the civil rights icon by posting a tweet making the holiday all about himself. Trump suggested his own inauguration was a more important event than the celebration of Dr. King’s life, while Kellyanne Conway claimed his impeachment was akin to the battles Dr. King fought.
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Trump Relied on a Rapid Coronavirus Test to Keep the White House Safe From COVID – That’s Not What It Was Designed For
They were warned.
President Donald Trump in late March touted a new rapid coronavirus test that produces a result within minutes. zHe called it a “whole new ballgame,” and bragged that “normally, this approval process from the FDA would take ten months, and even longer but we did it in four weeks.”
Trump quietly implemented it in the White House to protect himself from the coronavirus. Everyone coming near him would have to be tested. He claimed he was tested once a day. White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany accidentally admitted he was occasionally tested more than once a day. Reporters entering the White House had to be tested before being allowed entrance.
Even after President Trump tested positive last week and had to be hospitalized, his Chief Of Staff was walking around the White House, maskless (when he should have been in quarantine.) Asked by reporters why he wasn’t wearing a mask, Mark Meadows snarkily replied that he had been tested.
As it turns out, President Trump and his coronavirus testing czar, Admiral Brett Giroir, were relying on an Abbott Laboratories test that was designed for one purpose only: detect coronavirus in people who are showing symptoms, and only within the first seven days of those symptoms appearing.
It was not designed to prove someone is not infected – it was designed to prove someone already appearing to be was.
“Federal officials relied too heavily on the tests, then took the results for granted, experts say,” The New York Times reports, calling it “an ill-conceived disease-prevention strategy,” according to health experts.
The test is being used under an Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) from the FDA, meaning it has not been approved for general usage.
Trump, Giroir, and the White House ignored the instructions.
Any they had been warned.
Here’s President Trump in May being asked if he was concerned about the Abbott test, after reports revealed its accuracy was about 85%:
“Abbott’s a great test – it’s a quick test. And it can always be very rapidly double-checked.”
If it returns a false negative, who would know? Why “double-check” when it’s giving you the expected result?
“It’s not being used for the intended purpose,” infectious disease epidemiologist Syra Madad told the Times. “So there will be potentially a lot of false negatives and false positives.”
And here’s Trump’s coronavirus czar, touting the test as recently as late August, for “off-label” use – meaning for use other than designed or indicated by the manufacturer.
He was insistent, but he was wrong.
Although a very informative piece from @TheAtlantic @michaelmina_lab, https://t.co/cugzx2admn, one major mistake: of course the Abbott #BinaxNOW can be used to test asymptomatic individuals for screening. Off-label use often may be appropriate, particularly in specific settings.
— ADM Brett P. Giroir (@HHS_ASH) August 30, 2020
Giroir’s tweet “provoked confusion and ire from health experts and members of the public.”
“No, no, no,” said Dr. Butler-Wu, who recalled her dismay on seeing the tweet. “You can’t just take a product and off-label it and assume it’s happy days.”
One week ago the Associated Press reported “President Donald Trump announced Monday that the federal government will begin distributing millions of rapid coronavirus tests to states this week and urged governors to use them to reopen schools for students in kindergarten through 12th grade.”
‘I Swear, These People’: WH Chief of Staff Blasted for Not Wearing a Mask After Being Close to COVID-Positive President
White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows just concluded a press briefing from outside the White House. His remarks are being criticized, after he refused to give any information about President Donald Trump’s health after testing positive for coronavirus, refusing to discuss a timeline of the president’s travels and contacts, and refusing to wear a mask.
White House chief of staff declines to inform the public on “any particular treatment” that the president is undergoing for coronavirus.
— NBC News (@NBCNews) October 2, 2020
Meadows, actually, as U.S. Senator Chris Murphy (D-CT) rightly reminds, should be self-quarantining right now, not talking to reporters.
1/ It's just incredible. The White House is still, even today, openly violating CDC guidelines – costing lives.
Meadows should not have given that briefing. Even if you test negative, you must quarantine for 14 days if you have been in contact with someone who is positive.
— Chris Murphy (@ChrisMurphyCT) October 2, 2020
Presidential historian Michael Beschloss issued criticism of Meadows.
WH Chief of Staff Mark Meadows has absolute obligation to tell Americans what kind of treatment is being administered to President for coronavirus.
— Michael Beschloss (@BeschlossDC) October 2, 2020
Here’s Meadows refusing to give the American people any accounting of the president’s actions.
Mark Meadows is not going to get into the tick-tock of how Trump learned he was in contact with someone who tested positive for COVID-19 (Hope Hicks) and then decided to attend an indoor fundraiser without a mask anyway https://t.co/7A3vRU3reA
— Judd Legum (@JuddLegum) October 2, 2020
Meadows is also being roundly blasted after being in close proximity to President Donald Trump: Meadows wore no mask. (He was also in close proximity to Counselor to the President Hope Hicks, who tested positive for coronavirus on Wednesday. Meadows claims Hicks was not tested until Thursday, which contradicts every report.)
Meadows, who on Sept. 16 predicted a coronavirus vaccine “potentially by the end of September,” clearly has little understanding of the science of transmission, incubation, infection, and testing. He told reporters he did not need to wear a mask because he has been tested.
“Why aren’t you wearing a mask right now?” a reporter asks chief of staff Mark Meadows as he briefs on Pres. Trump’s COVID-19 test.
— ABC News (@ABC) October 2, 2020
— Brian J. Karem (@BrianKarem) October 2, 2020
After Trump tests positive, Chief of Staff Mark Meadows addresses the press WITHOUT A MASK.
He says he doesn’t need one because he tested negative.
It doesn’t work that way.
Trump also tested negative until he didn’t. pic.twitter.com/ky1ZgXMmJz
— Judd Legum (@JuddLegum) October 2, 2020
Many are outraged.
Where is Mark Meadows’ mask?
— Michael Beschloss (@BeschlossDC) October 2, 2020
Could someone get Mark Meadows a goddamn mask?!
— Adam Parkhomenko (@AdamParkhomenko) October 2, 2020
Where is your mask, @MarkMeadows????
— Jodi Jacobson 🩸🦷 #BlackLivesMatter (@jljacobson) October 2, 2020
FFS Meadows walks out of the West Wing without a mask on. I swear, these people.
— Matthew Miller (@matthewamiller) October 2, 2020
Mark Meadows says the President is experiencing minor symptoms … as he speaks to reporters at the White House without wearing a mask pic.twitter.com/10utj5WMBO
— Jonathan Karl (@jonkarl) October 2, 2020
Here is some context for the refusal of Meadows and other Trump aides’ refusal to wear masks – even after the president getting it – in DC you have to wear masks outside. I know it’s federal property, etc., but it’s also disregard for local law and order. https://t.co/EvWwnS3kDt
— Patricia Zengerle (@ReutersZengerle) October 2, 2020
I’m so tired of Mark Meadows & others who have lied, divided, maligned & bamboozled coming out to media & doing everything but repenting. They’ve all forfeited any right to sit in any of these offices. It’s the height of social & moral irresponsibility.
— Rev. Dr. William J. Barber II (@RevDrBarber) October 2, 2020
WH CoS Mark Meadows, who just emerged without a mask after Trump’s coronavirus diagnosis, said recently that he doesn’t wear a mask because it’s not 100 percent effectivehttps://t.co/9hVKSYbIpv
— Aaron Blake (@AaronBlake) October 2, 2020
‘Ambush’: Fox News Panics After Trump Faces Voters’ Questions at ABC News Town Hall
President Donald Trump faced tough questions from voters at a Philadelphia town hall meeting moderated by ABC News.
Trump was ridiculed for agreeing to the town hall, which did not go well for him.
The president faced a grilling from one of his 2016 voters, who said Trump threw people with health risks under the bus with his COVID-19 response.
ABC News anchor George Stephanopoulos shut down Trump’s attempts to mislead voters about health care with his make-believe plan.
Trump blew off concerns about racial injustice from a Black voter.
When discussing coronavirus herd immunity, he referred to it as “herd mentality.”
And Trump said he had no regrets about his coronavirus response, which has resulted in over 195,000 deaths.
After the town hall went disastrously for Trump, Fox News personality Laura Ingraham attacked ABC News, labeling the town hall an ambush.
Fox News is calling the ABC Town Hall an “ambush” pic.twitter.com/dGMtCkxct8
— Acyn Torabi (@Acyn) September 16, 2020
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