President Donald Trump had some tension-filled interactions with reporters at a White House briefing on Apr. 13 after they asked him questions about why he waited so long to take action on the coronavirus.
President Donald Trump, 73, did not have a civil press conference on Apr. 13 and CNN chyrons didn’t hesitate to express that by using words like “angry meltdown” and “propoganda session” during the telecast. The Commander-in-Chief held the conference to give updates on the current status of the coronavirus pandemic in the U.S. one day after a New York Times article claimed he was warned about how the virus could become a pandemic but “internal divisions, a lack of planning, and his faith in his own instincts” led to a delayed response. During the briefing, reporters brought up the article, which claimed many figures inside Trump’s government, including top White House advisers and experts, made it clear to him that he would need to take aggressive action as far back as Jan. Although Trump called the article “fake news” in a tweet shortly after it was published, the reporters at Monday’s briefing went on to ask him why he didn’t act on the shutdowns for things like international air travel and businesses, quicker than Mar. and he became defensive, leading CNN to add the bold captions about his reactions.
“Trump uses task force briefing to try and rewrite history on coronavirus response,” one CNN chyron read. “Trump melts down in angry response to reports he ignored virus warnings,” read another. Twitter users were quick to respond and share their opinions about the unusual chyrons and despite the seriousness of the situation, many of them couldn’t help but find the words amusing. “They’re freaking out and it’s glorious,” @dizzylizzy5280 wrote. “how did they even type up those chryons when they are crying so hard they can’t even see?” @Shem_Infinite asked. “That is funny days SNL skit stuff right there. CNN is real life Idiocracy,” @dsphalen wrote.
Since the latest White House briefing was one of the most tension-filled briefings we’ve seen recently, it’s no surprise that there would be such a headline-making response from both CNN and its viewers. During the briefing, Trump had some memorable moments with certain reporters who wouldn’t back down when looking for answers.
Whoever is writing the CNN chyrons- we demand she/he is given a substantial raise effective immediately. On fire. Bravo. pic.twitter.com/84QYeurpSO
— newmiamimama305 (@newmiamimama301) April 13, 2020
— Christina Zhao (@christinaxzhao) April 13, 2020
“Zero cases, zero deaths on Jan. 17,” Trump told reporter, Paula Reid of CBS after she asked why he didn’t take action in all of Feb. He went on to tell her he did “a lot” in Feb. and he will give her “a list” but when she kept on pressing him for answers then and there, he called her “a fake.” “You know that, your whole network, the way you cover it is fake and most of you, not all of you, but the people are wise to you, that’s why you have a lower approval rating than you’ve ever had before times probably three,” he said.
Trump was also asked about saying that “when someone is President of the United States their authority is total”, meaning they make all the decisions, which CNN White House correspondent Kaitlan Collins pointed out is “not true.” He addressed the question by stating that “the governors need us one way or the other because ultimately, it comes with the federal government.” He went on to say he and his team were getting along “very well” with the governors so there won’t be a problem with deciding on current and future actions concerning the coronavirus pandemic. When Collins continued to question his assertion that he as president has “total authority”, Trump brusquely rebuked her, snapping “Enough” and refused to answer, moving on to another question.
Trump’s latest press briefing comes after most states in the U.S. have put stay-at-home orders into place, advising citizens to only leave their homes for essentials to try and flatten the curve of the coronavirus infections and deaths. As of Apr. 13, there have been 2,022,386 people infected worldwide, including 586,941 Americans, with 119,630 total deaths worldwide, including 23,640 Americans.