Anderson Cooper to MyPillow CEO: ‘You really are like a snake oil salesman’
CNN’s Anderson Cooper on Tuesday slammed MyPillow CEO Mike Lindell, an ardent President Trump supporter, for pushing an unproven therapeutic treatment for coronavirus, sales of which could benefit him.
“You really are a snake oil salesman. I mean, you could be in the Old West standing on a box telling people to drink your amazing elixir that there’s no proof [of],” Cooper told Lindell in an interview.
Lindell is pushing oleandrin as a potential therapeutic for COVID-19. Last week, he was added to the board of Phoenix Biotechnology, which makes oleandrin, receiving a financial stake in the company, CNN reported.
Lindell confirmed to CNN Monday that Trump participated in a July meeting at the White House regarding the use of oleandrin, an extract from the plant Nerium oleander, as a potential coronavirus treatment.
>> @AndersonCooper to MyPillow CEO Mike Lindell: “You really are like a snake oil salesman.” pic.twitter.com/ENeSUfgc0J
— Brian Stelter (@brianstelter) August 18, 2020
Lindell defended his pushing of the drug, claiming he’s given it to friends and family and it “saved their lives.”
“I do what Jesus has me do,” he told Cooper.
“You think Jesus wants you out here promoting remedies that … [have] never been tested?” Cooper asked.
“Why would I do this? Ask yourself why would I ruin my reputation if I didn’t believe in this product?” Lindell responded.
Cooper said he thinks Lindell is doing it for money, adding that he doesn’t think Lindell has a great reputation.
Lindell claimed that the therapeutic had been tested but when pressed failed to provide details on whichever study he was referring to, though he said the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has had the research since April.
“One hundred percent, you’re just misconstrued, because the media is trying to take away this amazing cure that works for everyone,” he said.
A spokesperson for the FDA was not immediately available for comment.
Asked about oleandrin Monday, Trump told reporters, “We’ll look at it.”
“We’re looking at a lot of different things. I will say the FDA has been great. They are very close. We’re very close to a vaccine. Very close to a therapeutic. I have heard that name mentioned, we’ll find out,” the president said.
Copyright 2023 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.