"White House Coronavirus Press Briefing" by The White House / Public Domain

Under Trump, coronavirus scientists can speak — as long as they mostly toe the line

Apr 28, 2020

By Ashley Parker, Josh Dawsey, Yasmeen Abutaleb and Lena H. Sun

Robert Redfield, director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, issued a candid warning Tuesday in a Washington Post interview: A simultaneous flu and coronavirus outbreak next fall and winter “will actually be even more difficult than the one we just went through,” adding that calls and protests to “liberate” states from stay-at-home orders — as President Trump has tweeted — were “not helpful.”

The next morning, Trump cracked down with a Twitter edict: Redfield had been totally misquoted in a cable news story summarizing the interview, he claimed, and would be putting out a statement shortly.

By Wednesday evening, Redfield appeared at the daily White House briefing — saying he had been accurately quoted after all, while also trying to soften his words as the president glowered next to him.

“I didn’t say that this was going to be worse,” Redfield said. “I said it was going to be more difficult and potentially complicated because we’ll have flu and coronavirus circulating at the same time.”

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3 comments on “Under Trump, coronavirus scientists can speak — as long as they mostly toe the line

  • Not that we’re aware of. Can you try again, James? There shouldn’t be any issues provided it’s not a duplicate post and you wait till your comment appears before navigating away from the page. If there are, though, do let us know – if you can get a screenshot of any error message and email it to us at moderator @ richarddawkins.net, that would be helpful. Thanks.

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  • While the Trump administration is “correcting” the expert advice to make it Trump-compliant, in the USA, back in England the faith-healers are being investigated for being up to their usual dangerous irresponsible tricks – selling snake-oil at £91 a bottle! !

    A church in London has continued selling a fake Covid-19 cure, despite being under investigation by the charity watchdog.
    The Charity Commission launched a probe into the Kingdom Church, in south London, earlier this month for selling coronavirus “protection kits”.
    But instead of stopping the sale, the church renamed the kits and is now selling “divine cleansing oil”.
    The church said it was “convinced” the oil cured Covid-19.
    Trading Standards are also carrying out an investigation.

    The Charity Commissioners are also investigating, while Southwark Council warned of the many other scams involving bogus rest kits.

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