Even as the number of coronavirus infections and fatalities surges in states all across the country, Donald Trump essentially said on Tuesday that if you don’t factor in New York and New Jersey, everything is going pretty darn well.
During his daily coronavirus propaganda rally, which CNN refused to air, Trump said, “New York is having a much harder time than other of the cities, certain cities are doing, actually if you look down here, an incredible job.”
Trump stood in front of a graph that depicted the number of cases in each state and basically dismissed New York and New Jersey and pointed to the other states as evidence that “they’ve done an incredible job.”
— PoliticusUSA (@politicususa) March 31, 2020
JIM ACOSTA: Would you tell cities that aren’t doing what New York, New Jersey, Washington –the cities that have been taking charge in all of this – would you urge some of the cities that haven’t been doing this, Mr. President, to get with the program?
TRUMP: Well, I would. But you’re seeing New York, I believe the blue is New York. New York is having a much harder time than other of the cities, certain cities are doing, actually if you look down here, an incredible job. They were early. They were very, very firm, and they’ve done an incredible job. This is New Jersey and New York. This is –.
DR. BIRX: Remember, California and Washington state were down here, and they had some of the earliest cases.
ACOSTA: But we’re seeing places in Florida not doing what New York and New Jersey have been doing, what Washington state has been doing.
TRUMP: But they’re doing very well by comparison.
Other states are in the beginning stages of their surges
It’s clear by what’s happening in New York that this virus was in the Big Apple far earlier than most people knew. That likely means that they are ahead of other states when it comes to the surge in cases and fatalities.
As Gov. Andrew Cuomo said last week, “What happens to New York is going to wind up happening to California and Washington state and Illinois. We’re just getting there first.”
So when Trump apparently misinterprets a colorful graph and claims things are looking great outside of New York and New Jersey, he’s ignoring the trends in other states.
For example, Florida – a state he claimed was doing “very well” under the failed leadership of Gov. Ron DeSantis – has reported more than 1,000 cases just over the past day. The same goes for Michigan and Louisiana, two other emerging hot spots.
With even his own task force saying there will likely be a minimum of 100,000 to 200,000 coronavirus deaths, this is clearly more than a New York and New Jersey problem.
It’s a national crisis, and Donald Trump should start acting like a national leader.
Sean Colarossi currently resides in Cleveland, Ohio. He earned his Bachelor of Arts degree in Journalism from the University of Massachusetts Amherst and was an organizing fellow for both of President Obama’s presidential campaigns. He also worked with Planned Parenthood as an Affordable Care Act Outreach Organizer in 2014, helping northeast Ohio residents obtain health insurance coverage.