President Donald Trump on Friday continued the false and misleading allegations that have become part of the White House briefing on coronavirus, gathering a week in which the number of confirmed cases across the country topped 100,000.
Trump claimed that 22 days ago, "everything went beautifully" before the United States was hit by what he calls "the invisible enemy." He said: "22 days ago we had the biggest economy in the world, everything went well, the stock market hit a high all the time"
First facts: While the market had previously set records at all times under Trump, March 5, 22 days before Trump's comments, fell 3.6% or 970 points, and the fifth worst fall of a day's point on the record, rising to 3,000 points since the climax February 12. Today's fall i Dow followed drops of 1,000 points and 800 points earlier that week.
How unforeseen the crisis was
Several times through Friday's press conference, the president claimed the current situation was unprecedented and unpredictable. According to Trump, "nobody was prepared for this," not even former presidents. He added, "In all fairness to all the former presidents, none of them ever believed that such a thing could happen."
First facts: This is untrue. The US intelligence community and public health experts had for years warned that the country was exposed to a pandemic. Experts had also warned that the country would face a shortage of critical medical equipment, such as respirators, if a pandemic occurred.
You can read a full fact check here
about some of the pandemic warnings. You can read a full fact check here
about warnings about the need for extra fans in a pandemic.
The former GM plant in Lordstown, Ohio
Like he did on Twitter Previously
On Friday, Trump suggested at the briefing that General Motors should produce respirators at its factory in Lordstown, Ohio.
"… honestly, I think it would be a good place to build the fans, but we'll see," Trump said.
First facts: General motors sold the shuttered Lordstown facility in November 2019. Trump had applauded the potential sales inn a tweet in May 2019. Ohio Democratic Senator Sherrod Brown said on Twitter after Trump's tweet on Friday, but before the briefing: "General Motors sold Lordstown. If the president cared about his former workers, he would know."
Coronavirus and influenza
Trump said about the coronavirus
: "You can call it a bacterium, you can call it a flu, you can call it a virus, you know you can call it many different names. I'm not sure anyone even knows what it is."
First facts: You can't exactly call coronavirus "a flu." They are simply, different viruses with different properties, even though They share some symptoms coronavirus has a much higher mortality rate.
Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, said Thursday during a chat with NBA star Stephen Curry that the coronavirus is "very much more transmissible than the flu and more importantly, it's significantly more serious" – with a mortality rate about 10 times higher than 0.1% for the flu.
It is also obviously untrue that no one "knows" what the coronavirus is. Although it was initially seen as one mystery virus when it appeared in China
, we knew it was genetic information by the beginning of January.