Joe Biden has retreated from the national stage, holding one press conference a week where only a handful of questions are allowed to be asked. But even with his limited public presence, Biden has repeatedly made misleading claims while talking about the coronavirus.
Four Pinocchios for Biden’s Campaign Editing a Video to Deliberately Misrepresent Comments by the President
Washington Post: “Over the next few seconds, the video shows a montage of intentionally unflattering clips of President Trump. So far, it looks like a standard Internet campaign ad. At the 10-second mark, the camera shows a tight shot of the president saying ‘coronavirus’ and then cuts to a wide shot where he says, ‘this is their new hoax.’”
Washington Post: “Both clips are from Trump’s Feb. 28 campaign rally in North Charleston, S.C., but he never said ‘coronavirus, this is their new hoax.’ Rather, Biden’s ad clipped a large part of Trump’s speech to make it seem as though he had.”
“Ultimately, the seriousness of the coronavirus outbreak, the fact that Trump had clarified his comments on the matter before the ad was released, and the blatant way the Biden camp isolated his remarks about the American Dream pushed us to Four Pinocchios.”
Biden Butchered a Quote by President Trump to Make Trump’s Comments Seem Nefarious
Biden: “One of the Governors I spoke to, when they called and asked for help in terms of masks and other things, the President allegedly told her, ‘take care of yourself, that’s not my responsibility.’ I forget the exact phrase used.”
President Trump: “Respirators, ventilators, all of the equipment — try getting it yourselves,’ Mr. Trump told the governors during the conference call, a recording of which was shared with The New York Times. ‘We will be backing you, but try getting it yourselves. Point of sales, much better, much more direct if you can get it yourself.’”
Mostly False: Biden’s Claim that the Trump Administration rejected WHO coronavirus test kits
Biden: “The World Health Organization offered, offered the testing kits that they have available and to give it to us now. We refused them. We did not want to buy them.”
Politifact: “No discussions occurred between WHO and CDC about WHO providing COVID-19 tests to the United States,” said WHO spokeswoman Margaret Harris. “This is consistent with experience since the United States does not ordinarily rely on WHO for reagents or diagnostic tests because of sufficient domestic capacity.”
“Biden’s emphasis on WHO offering kits is simply wrong. We rate this claim Mostly False.”
Three Pinocchios: Biden claimed the Trump Administration Had Not Made an Effort to Get “Our Experts” into China
Biden: “Early on in this crisis, I said, among others, that you know you should get into China and get our experts there. We have the best in the world. Get them in so we know what is actually happening. There was no effort to do that.”
Washington Post: “The administration at various levels sought access for CDC experts — and as noted earlier, an administration official, speaking not for attribution, says an offer to send staff was made at the presidential level”
White House National Security Advisor Robert O’Brien: “We continue to offer assistance to the Chinese. We have offered to send over the CDC and other US medical and public health officials…We have not heard back yet from the Chinese on the offers, but we are prepared to continue to cooperate with them.”
Biden said the Trump Administration Eliminated the Work of the White House National Security Council Directorate for Global Health Security and Biodefense
Biden: “The Obama-Biden Administration set up the White House National Security Council Directorate for Global Health Security and Biodefense to prepare for future pandemics like COVID-19. Donald Trump eliminated it — and now we’re paying the price.”
Washington Post Fact Checkers: “The office — as set up by Obama — was folded into another office. Thus, one could claim the office was eliminated. But the staff slots did not disappear and at least initially the key mission of the remained a priority. So one can also claim nothing changed and thus Biden’s criticism is overstated.”
Washington Post Opinion, Tim Morrison: “Because I led the very directorate assigned that mission, the counterproliferation and biodefense office, for a year and then handed it off to another official who still holds the post, I know the charge is specious.”
Four Pinocchios: ‘The Biden Campaign’s false claim a top CDC official was ‘silenced’’
Biden Advisor Ron Klain: “All the while, anyone who raised an alarm about this — a red flag — was silenced. Look no further than Dr. Nancy Messonnier, a career official at the Centers for Disease Control who was the first to raise the alarm. … Starting the next day, Dr. Messonnier no longer appeared at public briefings of the White House coronavirus task force. The president and the White House sent a clear message to scientists in the government — there would be a price for speaking out and speaking up.”
Washington Post: “Meanwhile, far from being silenced, Messonnier kept doing her telephone briefings with reporters — on Feb. 28, Feb. 29, March 3 and March 9. She also appeared in four videos shared on social media, such as this one from March 14.
“But that’s no excuse for this video to claim Messonnier was silenced when, in fact, she kept briefing reporters.”
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