SPONSORED:

Limbaugh claims coronavirus is being 'weaponized' to 'bring down' Trump

Conservative radio host Rush Limbaugh on Monday suggested on his show that an outbreak of coronavirus in China was being "weaponized" by the news media against President TrumpDonald John TrumpNearly 300 former national security officials sign Biden endorsement letter DC correspondent on the death of Michael Reinoehl: 'The folks I know in law enforcement are extremely angry about it' Late night hosts targeted Trump over Biden 97 percent of the time in September: study MORE.

During a segment of his show highlighted by the left-leaning watchdog group Media Matters, Limbaugh likened the disease to the common cold despite its symptoms including a deadly form of pneumonia that has killed more than 2,000 people in China alone.

"Folks, this coronavirus thing, I want to try to put this in perspective for you. It looks like the coronavirus is being weaponized as yet another element to bring down Donald Trump," Limbaugh said.

ADVERTISEMENT

"You think I’m wrong about this? You think I’m missing it by saying that’s ... Yeah, I’m dead right on this. The coronavirus is the common cold, folks," he continued.

Limbaugh then pointed to large drops in the stock market in recent days thought to be caused by fears of the coronavirus outbreak, and repeated a debunked conspiracy theory that the disease was a released bioweapon.

"Ninety-eight percent of people who get the coronavirus survive," he said. "It’s a respiratory system virus. It probably is a ChiCom laboratory experiment that is in the process of being weaponized. All superpower nations weaponize bioweapons."

U.S. officials previously told AFP that conspiracy theories about the coronavirus including its alleged origin as a bioweapon were being spread by Russian disinformation sites and troll accounts on social media.

Other conservative figures including Sen. Tom CottonTom Bryant CottonBarrett fight puts focus on abortion in 2020 election COVID outbreak threatens GOP's Supreme Court plans This week: Coronavirus complicates Senate's Supreme Court fight MORE (R-Ark.) have also repeated the conspiracy theory in recent days.

The coronavirus has spread to 29 countries outside of China and there have been more than 30 cases reported in the U.S.