President Donald Trump’s presidential campaign posted a manipulated video implying that former Vice President Joe Biden downplayed the coronavirus by telling people not to “panic,” using a mid-sentence edit to omit crucial context.
Trump and his supporters are desperately pushing the idea that the revelations contained in recordings of conversations with Bob Woodward — that Trump knew in early February that the virus was much more deadly than the seasonal flu, yet continued to “downplay” the threat — were merely an effort to avoid “panic.”
In an attempt to bolster that defense, the Trump War Room Twitter account posted a clip of Biden that they captioned “Joe Biden on February 28: ‘It’s not a time to panic about coronavirus’.”
Joe Biden on February 28: "It's not a time to panic about coronavirus" pic.twitter.com/y5ZLeAFRal
— Trump War Room – Text TRUMP to 88022 (@TrumpWarRoom) September 10, 2020
The clip is, indeed, from February 28, but it cuts Biden off in the middle of a sentence in which he goes on to say “but coronavirus is a serious public health challenge.”
It was part of a 3-minute chunk Biden devoted to the virus, one in which he repeatedly slammed Trump and talked about the challenge the virus presented.
In fact, Biden specifically slammed Trump for the “downplaying” that the Trump campaign was trying to deflect from with their manipulated video.
“Folks, Trump thought that his upbeat tweets could somehow stop the coronavirus,” Biden said. “Well I have news for Donald Trump. Like the rest of us, this virus is not impressed by his tweets.”
Biden went on to say, “We need real action in the White House. Not more lies. It’s no surprise that the president who thinks that climate change is a hoax also thinks that coronavirus is a conspiracy. We need a president who stands for the truth over fiction, and facts and science over fiction.”
“Folks, we can beat this virus, we can keep it from being a pandemic, but it takes a lot of work,” Biden concluded.
Biden gave that speech the day before the U.S. confirmed its first coronavirus death, but several weeks after Trump told Woodward just how deadly the new virus was.
The former VP was also interviewed that same morning on CNN, and similarly told New Day anchor John Berman, “This can be handled, there’s no reason to panic if you’d let the experts go. Look, the idea that we don’t have serious experts in China, in the parts of China where this virus has spread, is just not correct. It’s not the way to do business.”
“If I were president I’d be insisting China let us come in with our experts. We can help them and we can help ourselves. We can help the world,” Biden said, concluding, “So I just think this whole idea about us gaming the political impact of this, it’s about people’s lives. It’s about the reality. But this could get very much worse, but it could also be handled with the right people.”
Watch the full clip that the Trump campaign cut down above, via Fox News.
Originally published: 2020-09-10 12:20:14