He likes the numbers where they are

The Guardian too was unimpressed by Trump’s performance yesterday.

Donald Trump used a freewheeling press conference on Friday, intended to provide updates on the coronavirus, as an opportunity to attack Democrats, praise his own intelligence, lash out at CNN and spread false and misleading information about the status of the outbreak, as a slew of new cases were confirmed aboard a cruise ship off the California coast.

Speaking at the Centers for Disease Control’s (CDC) main campus in Atlanta, Georgia, while wearing his red “Keep America Great” re-election campaign hat, the president went on a rant criticizing Washington state’s governor, Jay Inslee, as a “snake” and saying he disagreed with his vice-president’s complimentary remarks toward the Democrat. Inslee, who ran for president last year, is overseeing the response to the most serious outbreak in the US.

Oh yes the red campaign hat. I griped about it yesterday but I forgot about the campaign aspect. It seems grotesquely inappropriate to mash those two occasions together. “Sorry about the virus, folks, now vote for me!”

In a moment that some commentators have called one of the most “disturbing” and “frightening” remarks of Trump’s response to the public health crisis, the president also said he would prefer that cruise ship passengers exposed to the virus be left aboard so that they don’t add to the number of total infections in the US.

“I like the numbers being where they are,” said Trump, who appeared to be explicitly acknowledging his political concerns about the outbreak: “I don’t need to have the numbers double because of one ship that wasn’t our fault.”

Breathtaking, isn’t it.

It is frightening. It’s frightening that anyone can be that ego-imprisoned.

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