Almost nothing’: Don Jr’s stunning claim

Friday - 30/10/2020 21:01
Donald Jr on Fox News last night. Picture: The Ingraham AngleSource:Fox News
Donald Jr on Fox News last night. Picture: The Ingraham AngleSource:Fox News
Donald Jr on Fox News last night. Picture: The Ingraham AngleDonald Trump’s eldest son has shocked the President’s critics and health experts with his latest claim about the coronavirus pandemic.

President Donald Trump has claimed coronavirus deaths in the United States are “way down”, while his son Donald Jr says deaths are now at “almost nothing”.

Neither assertion is true.

I’ll give you the facts first here, and then we’ll examine the Trumps’ claims.

According to Johns Hopkins University, the US reported 88,521 new confirmed infections yesterday, which is the highest daily total since the pandemic started.

It also recorded another 971 deaths, roughly in line with the daily average in recent weeks.

For context, the US is currently averaging more deaths each day than Australia has suffered throughout the entire pandemic.

More than 40,000 Americans are currently hospitalised, and there are fears the death rate is about to spike, as fatalities have been known to lag behind cases by several weeks.

These charts from the COVID Tracking Project show you the virus’s trajectory.

RELATED: Trump fumes about media’s coronavirus coverage

Data via the COVID Tracking Project.
Data via the COVID Tracking Project.Source:Supplied


Data via the COVID Tracking Project.
Data via the COVID Tracking Project.Source:Supplied


Donald Jr appeared on Fox News last night, where he was interviewed by Laura Ingraham.

She asked the President’s son to react to comments by CNN’s chief medical commentator, Dr Sanjay Gupta, who yesterday reported 82 per cent of Mr Trump’s campaign rallies had been followed by an increase in infections in the local area.

Each rally draws thousands of the President’s supporters, who stand in close proximity to each other with no social distancing. The vast majority of attendees do not wear face masks.

“These rallies should not be happening,” Dr Gupta said.

“Don’t go. Don’t go to these rallies. Just about anywhere in the country now, if you go to a gathering that is several hundred people, it’s without a doubt the virus is attending that rally with you. If you are clustered close together, you don’t know who is carrying the virus, and you don’t know how many people are carrying the virus.

“You are putting yourself at risk.”

He advised anyone who had already attended one of Mr Trump’s rallies to assume they had been exposed to the virus and self-quarantine for 14 days.

“You’re going home to your family, to your friends. You may infect community members. If you go to an event like that, right now, with the amount of virus that is spreading in this country, you have to assume that you’ve had some sort of exposure,” Dr Gupta said.

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Donald Jr did not think much of that advice.

“These people are truly morons. You know what I mean?” he told Ingraham.

“I like how they go after Scott Atlas because he’s not an epidemiologist, but Sanjay Gupta now magically is. I mean give me a break.”

Dr Gupta is a neurosurgeon, and has been involved in medical journalism since 2003.

Dr Scott Atlas, a neuroradiologist, is a controversial member of the White House’s coronavirus task force. He has questioned the effectiveness of face masks and argued in favour of a herd immunity strategy, alarming other experts on the task force.

Such a strategy would involve allowing the virus to spread through most of the community while trying to protect the most vulnerable, such as the elderly.

“I mean the reality is this. If you look – I put it up on my Instagram a couple of days ago, because I went through the CDC data, because I kept hearing about new infections. But I was like, why aren’t they talking about deaths?” Donald Jr continued.

“Oh, because the number is almost nothing, because we’ve gotten control of this thing. We understand how it works. We have the therapeutics. If you look at this, look at my Instagram, it’s gone to almost nothing.”

Here is a clip of Donald Jr’s remarks, followed by the Instagram post he mentioned.

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