President Donald Trump wants to make one thing clear: He doesn’t kid! Sure he hired one of the world’s most famous neurosurgeons to be the doctor of houses, and yes, his administration ordered ventilators from some guy they found off Twitter who never made ventilators in his life and paid him $69 million, but that’s besides the point.
On Tuesday, the president was adamant that when he spoke to the five people who attended his rally inside the bathroom of a Tulsa, Okla., KFC and noted that he wants COVID-19 testing slowed because testing only proves that a lot of people have the coronavirus and he doesn’t want this number getting out because it makes him look bad, he wasn’t joking.
“I don’t kid. Let me just tell you. Let me make it clear,” Trump told reporters, when pressed on whether his comments at his professional wrestling event Saturday were intended as a joke, Politico reports.
“We have got the greatest testing program anywhere in the world. We test better than anybody in the world. Our tests are the best in the world, and we have the most of them. By having more tests, we find more cases,” he continued.
“Our test will punch any other test in the face and then kick that test in the testicles. In fact, that’s what we should call our test….Mike, can you get on that? Testicles!” (He did not say this last part.)
White House aides were quick to play cleanup as the president’s dumb-ass remarks around testing made the news cycle. They claimed that the president was just fucking around. “He said, sike!” White House aide Ben Dover Bin Laden told no one.
Administration officials as high ranking as Vice President Mike Pence have scrambled in recent days to clean up Trump’s statements from his weekend rally, where he reprised his dubious logic regarding testing rates before an arena of supporters.
“When you do testing to that extent, you’re going to find more people,” Trump said during the rally. “You’re going to find more cases. So I said to my people, ‘Slow the testing down, please.’”
White House trade adviser Peter Navarro suggested Sunday the president never issued such an explicit directive, telling CNN that Trump’s remarks were “tongue-in-cheek.”
“It was a comment that he made in jest,” White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany said at a news briefing Monday, adding: “Any suggestion that testing has been curtailed is not rooted in fact.”
Even Pence sought to manage the political fallout, telling governors during a conference call Monday that Trump’s testing comments were merely a “passing observation,” according to a CBS News report.
But in an interview with Scripps Networks, Trump took everyone outside and introduced them to his new bus and then casually rolled over all of them.
“If we did slow it down, we wouldn’t show nearly as many cases,” he said. This is the president’s brilliant plan. He also noted that if he is hiding under a blanket that he is invisible and that if he farts and touches you that you now have the “fart touch” and you can’t give it back to him because he is immune.
The president doesn’t understand why this is so hard for everyone to understand so he explained it again on Twitter.
“Cases are going up in the U.S. because we are testing far more than any other country, and ever expanding. With smaller testing we would show fewer cases!” he tweeted.
“In one way, it tells you you have cases,” Trump said. “In another way, you find out where the cases are, and you do a good job. We are doing a great job. We have never been credited for it. We’re doing the best testing job anywhere in the world.”
Politico notes that Dr. Anthony Fauci didn’t know WTF the president was talking about as no member of the White House coronavirus task force had ever been asked to slow testing. During a House Energy and Commerce Committee hearing, Fauci told Congress that they planned on stepping the testing up.
“It’s the opposite,” he said. “We’re going to be doing more testing, not less.”
To date, “more than 120,000 Americans have already died as a result of COVID-19, and the total number of confirmed infections nationwide has surged beyond 2.3 million,” Politico reports.