On “‘Slow the testing down” Trump says “I don’t kid”

Trumps remarks about testing fewer people to get fewer Covid cases at his rally in Tulsa, Oklahoma were excused as ‘joking’ by the White House and loyal repeaters, but Trump now says “I don’t kid”.

In his speech he said:

“When you do testing to that extent you’re going to find more people, you’re going to find cases. So I said to my people, ‘Slow the testing down, please.’ They test and they test. We got tests for people who don’t know what’s going on.”

CBS News: Trump says he wasn’t joking about testing slowdown: “I don’t kid”

President Trump doubled down on his recent comments about ordering his administration to slow down coronavirus testing, contradicting several White House officials who defended his remarks by claiming they were made in jest.

A White House official argued to CBS News after the rally that Mr. Trump’s comments were “in jest,” and Vice President Mike Pence told the nation’s governors in a call Monday that the president was making a “passing observation.” White House trade adviser Peter Navarro said Sunday that Mr. Trump’s remarks were “tongue-in-cheek.” Acting Homeland Security Secretary Chad Wolf told “Face the Nation” he knew of no directive from the president to slow down testing.

But when asked by CBS News’ Weijia Jiang on Tuesday if he was kidding when he made those remarks, Mr. Trump replied, “I don’t kid.”

“One way, it shows you have cases, and in another way you find out where the cases are and you do a good job,” the president said.

White House Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany told reporters Tuesday afternoon that Mr. Trump was making a “serious point.”

“He was making was a serious point, and that’s why he said ‘I don’t kid.’ He was making a serious point, but he was using sarcasm to do that at the rally,” McEnany said. “But the serious point he was making is that when you test more people you identify more cases. Cases should not be indicative of the progress we’ve made.”

So he was kidding but he wasn’t until he says he is or he isn’t.

Blaming the ‘Fake News’ is getting a bit repetitive and futile as he makes a fool of himself via Twitter and at his rallies.

And he has had another tweet slapped with a violation message:

This Tweet violated the Twitter Rules about abusive behavior. However, Twitter has determined that it may be in the public’s interest for the Tweet to remain accessible. Learn more
The tweet:

Threatening protesters with more violence shows that Trump hasn’t learnt from the last embarrassment in Washington.
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  1. Grumpy

     /  24th June 2020

    So what? Total TDS. In New Zealand we went the whole way and stopped testing those in quarantine. None of those released on compassionate grounds were tested. Was this so Jacinda could claim we have beaten the virus?
    The US are testing huge numbers of people. As 80% at least do not show symptoms it stands to reason that US will show a much higher infection rate than NZ who don’t even test those most at risk. Our policy of only testing those showing symptoms meant we were only likely to identify 20% of those infected.

  2. David

     /  24th June 2020

    He was clearly kidding around at his rally, its a media interpretation to go on the attack by taking his words out of context. Then he said I dont kid and went on to explain the benefits of lots of testing, its hard to calculate how many times he has boasted about doing the most tests in the world, in fact there was a post on here having a crack at him for his claim that he was doing more testing than every other country.
    Cant have it both ways…oh wait its Trump of course you can.

    As far as enforcing law and order its about damn time and the Democrat governors and mayors have been woeful. The “block party” in Seattle that their mayor has downplayed has seen 2 people shot and one dead, peoples businesses looted and destroyed and their livelihoods gone forever, there are 500 residential properties in CHOP what about these peoples rights. If a group of rioters took over a 6 block area of downtown Auckland force would be used to retake it, these people have hardly responded to dialogue they want to tear down capitalism. Even Ardern would had the place cleared, forcibly.

    • Gezza

       /  24th June 2020

      “Cant have it both ways…oh wait its Trump of course you can.”

      The dude rambles on at these rallies with so much stupid even his own aides & Lieutenants end up having to Trumpsplain the crazier comments away. It’s the price he pays for being an all over the place motormouth. It keeps him in the news, which is what he wants anyway, & why he does it. Why are you complaining?

      Block party shootings:
      “Even Ardern would had the place cleared, forcibly.”

      Not if they were Mongrel Mob or Black Power, on the evidence to date.

      And let’s wait & see who turns out to have done this shooting. Ideal situation for Boogaloo Boys to exploit.

      • Everyone says things that look odd when they are transcribed, but this is ridiculous. Doesn’t he use notes ?

        My worry , were I American, would be that he’s sounding more and more like someone with dementia.

    • Fight4nz

       /  24th June 2020

      What would your view be on China clearing out the Hong Kong protestors using any force deemed necessary?

  3. David

     /  24th June 2020

    CHOPs manifesto:

    Abolition of the Seattle police force (including, just to add a sting of malice, existing police pensions) and the “attached court system.”
    Abolition of imprisonment. (The authors are at pains to make clear that “abolition” in these demands really does mean “100 percent of funding.”)
    Retrials for people of colour (no mention of others) currently serving a prison sentence for violent crime.
    Replacement (presumably wholesale) of the current criminal justice system by restorative/transformative accountability programs.

    Even the dripping wet Mayor of Seattle is going to have to get the batons out after she let half her downtown area get destroyed and this is after letting one of Americas nicest cities turn into a homeless camp.

  4. Oh, so he DID mean to ask Russia for help hacking Hillary Clinton? Glad we’ve cleared up that he lied under oath about that, then.

  5. David

     /  24th June 2020

    Its the governments job to protect its citizens, number one job and Trump is right to advocate force is used to take back control of Seattle. The autonomous new country probably has the highest homicide rate in the world and is obviously descending into chaos and putting many more lives at risk if nothing is done.

    “Seattle’s mayor Jenny Durkan, who once called the Capitol Hill Occupied (or Ongoing) Protest (CHOP) a “block party” and contended that protesters were hosting a “summer of love” is still defending the six-block “autonomous zone” despite her own decision to “wind down” CHOP amid increasing violence.

    Police officers will dismantle the demonstration and return to the city’s East Precinct, located inside the CHOP zone as early as Tuesday after a series of shootings over the weekend left one man dead and at least two others wounded. One victim remains in critical condition.

    “Residents” of CHOP blocked police and emergency medical personnel from attending to victims and investigating the shootings, leaving many long-term, actual residents of the area concerned that CHOP would descend further into lawlessness.”

    Washington State is an open carry state.

  6. Trump also doesn’t kid about interfering in legal processes to benefit himself or his associates.

    Here the Attorney General appears to interfere in the sentencing of Roger Stone for fear of repercussions from Trump if he doesn’t.

    • Prosecutor to testify Roger Stone case was handled in ‘unprecedented way,’ based on ‘political considerations’

      A prosecutor who quit the Justice Department over the Roger Stone case is expected to criticize the DOJ’s handling of Stone’s sentencing during testimony on Capitol Hill on Wednesday, saying officials treated the political operative “differently from everyone else” because of his relationship with President Trump.

      Assistant U.S. Attorney Aaron S.J. Zelinsky was subpoenaed last week to testify before the House Judiciary Committee as part of a broad investigation launched by Democrats into the “unprecedented politicization” of the Justice Department under the leadership of Attorney General William Barr.

      Zelinksy, in his prepared opening statement, is expected to testify that the sentencing for Stone was handled in an “unusual and unprecedented way.”


      • From Aaron Zelinsky’s opening statement to the House Judiciary Committee tomorrow:

        “What I saw was the Department of Justice exerting significant pressure on the line prosecutors in the case to obscure the correct Sentencing Guidelines calculation to which Roger Stone was subject – and to water down and in some cases outright distort the events that transpired in his trial and the criminal conduct that gave rise to his conviction. Such pressure resulted in the virtually unprecedented decision to override the original sentencing recommendation in his case and to file a new sentencing memorandum that included statements and assertions at odds with the record and contrary to Department of Justice policy.

        What I heard – repeatedly – was that Roger Stone was being treated differently from any other defendant because of his relationship to the President. I was told that the Acting U.S. Attorney for the District of Columbia, Timothy Shea, was receiving heavy pressure from the highest levels of the Department of Justice to cut Stone a break, and that the U.S. Attorney’s sentencing instructions to us were based on political considerations. I was also told that the acting U.S. Attorney was giving Stone such unprecedentedly favorable treatment because he was “afraid of the President.””

        Link to Zelinsky’s statement.

        Click to access zelinsky_opening_statement_hjc.pdf

        Barr even considered attacking his own DOJ prosecutors to get Stone less time:

        “We repeatedly asked to see that new memorandum prior to its filing. Our request was denied. We were not informed about the content or substance of the proposed filing, or even who was writing it. We were told that one potential draft of the filing attacked us personally.”

        The same is almost certainly true of the Flynn motion to dismiss in which Barr’s flunkies insinuated that prosecutors had engaged in misconduct.

        Barr seems careless in a way that Dick Cheney was not — Cheney was careful not to leave his fingerprints anywhere if he could help it, even when time was running out in 2007-08. Barr seems to be pretty reckless, and that kind of recklessness leads to unwanted problems down the line.

  7. As U.S. coronavirus cases surge, Texas, Arizona and Nevada hit new records

    For a second consecutive week, Texas, Arizona and Nevada set records in their coronavirus outbreaks, and 10 other states from Florida to California were grappling with a surge in infections.

    While the United States appeared to have curbed the outbreak for several weeks in May, overall cases rose 25% last week with 10 states reporting a greater than 50% rise in new infections, according to a Reuters analysis.

    Arizona and Nevada reported record increases in new cases on Tuesday after recording all-time highs last week, according to a Reuters tally. Louisiana, which was a hotspot early in the U.S. outbreak, reported over 1,300 new cases on Tuesday – its highest level since April 7. Neighboring Mississippi reported a record number of new cases on Tuesday, its highest in two weeks.

    While most states are increasing testing, the percentage of tests coming back positive is also rising. At least four states are averaging double-digit rates of positive tests for the virus: Arizona at 20%, Florida and Utah both at 11%, and Texas at 10%. By contrast, New York, formerly the epicenter of the U.S. outbreak, has been reporting positive test rates of around 1%.

    The World Health Organization considers positivity rates above 5% to be especially concerning.

    Trump on Tuesday held fast to his claim that the spike in U.S. cases in multiple states was due to testing, not increased spread of the disease.

    Anthony Fauci, the top U.S. infectious disease official, said he was seeing a disturbing surge in several states, pointing to community spread as one reason infections were on the rise.

    Many of these states are also seeing record hospitalizations – a metric not affected by increased testing.

    In Arizona, hospitalized COVID-19 patients hit a record of over 2,100 on Tuesday, up 70% from two weeks ago. Only 16% of its intensive care unit beds remain available, according to a state website.


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