Trump rips coronavirus coverage, to hold news conference
President Trump said in an early morning tweet on Wednesday that he will hold a news conference at 6 p.m. to address his administration’s response to the coronavirus outbreak.
In the post, he continued to blame the media and Democrats for overstating the danger of the disease, even as health experts have warned of its spread.
Trump accused MSNBC and CNN of “doing everything possible to make the Caronavirus look as bad as possible, including panicking markets, if possible.”
He insisted the U.S. is “in great shape” in its handling of the disease, adding that he and health officials will hold a news conference at the White House on Wednesday evening.
I will be having a News Conference at the White House, on this subject, today at 6:00 P.M. CDC representatives, and others, will be there. Thank you!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) February 26, 2020
The president’s tweets appeared to underscore his focus on how the deadly disease is affecting financial markets. The Dow Jones Industrial Average lost nearly 2,000 points over the last two days.
Trump is facing mounting pressure over his handling of the coronavirus from lawmakers and health officials, who warned on Tuesday that the country should prepare for an outbreak of cases in the U.S.
“It’s not a question of if this will happen but when this will happen and how many people in this country will have severe illnesses,” Nancy Messonnier, the director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases, told reporters. “Disruption to everyday life might be severe.”
There are 57 confirmed cases of the coronavirus in the U.S., including in 40 Americans who were repatriated from the Diamond Princess cruise ship.
Republicans and Democrats alike have signaled the government response has thus far been insufficient to prepare for the spread of the coronavirus in the U.S. The Trump administration requested $2.5 billion in additional funding to combat the disease, a figure some lawmakers viewed as inadequate.
But Trump and other administration officials have sought to downplay the severity of the disease within U.S. borders. The president has repeatedly attacked the media and Democrats, claiming they refuse to give him credit for his handling of the coronavirus, while top economic adviser Larry Kudlow on Tuesday asserted that the virus was “contained.”