Dr. Ronny Jackson, the former White House physician turned Congressional candidate, revealed his big priority is to support Donald Trump, not to fight COVID-19. When asked about his state’s mask mandate on Fox & Friends today, he said, “I don’t wear a mask all that often to be honest with you.”
Jackson, you may recall, is the doctor who gave an over-the-top glowing medical report on Trump’s health in 2018, was subsequently nominated as secretary of Veterans Affairs, but withdrew “amid allegations of professional misconduct, including drinking on the job and overprescribing medication,” as The Texas Tribune put it. The Tribune also noted that he called the accusations “completely false and fabricated."
With a lot of help from the Trump campaign, Jackson won his Republican primary runoff last night and will almost certainly win the very red seat in November.
Fox & Friends offered Jackson a victory lap this morning. Cohost Jedediah Bila introduced him as a “very special guest” and sounded as though she could hardly contain her excitement as she gushed “Jackson is a first-time candidate backed by President Trump!”
Jackson made it clear he’ll return the favor to Trump. His main goal for serving in Congress seems to be providing Trump more support. “I’m just disgusted with what’s going on in our country,” he said. “I had a unique opportunity at this particular time to actually get in a fight and do something about what’s wrong with our country.”
He did not cite the pandemic or any economic issues as a wrong he'd like to right. It's Trump not getting the support he's due that was apparently Jackson's motivation.
“I’ve been frustrated for a long time about the lack of support that the president has sometimes, even from Republicans in the House and the Senate,” Jackson continued. “And he needs some folks in there, that are gonna get in there, they’re gonna have his back, that are gonna help him with his Keep America Great/America First agenda. I believe in him, I believe in that agenda and it just motivated me to get in the race and to do something about it and that’s what led me here and we’re on our way.”
It was cohost Steve Doocy who brought up the pandemic. Doocy did not ask Jackson what he might do to help ease the coronavirus crisis in his state but asked about Governor Greg Abbott’s mask mandate. Doocy quoted CDC Director Robert Redfield statement that if all Americans wear a mask, the coronavirus could be controlled within 1-2 months.
“Dr. Jackson, what’s your message to people who, for one reason or another, simply do not want to wear a mask?” Doocy asked. I'll guess that Doocy figured Jackson would send a message to viewers that it's important to wear a mask. But that's not the message they got.
Jackson’s message? No mask, no worries - coronavirus no biggie!
JACKSON: Well I think that wearing a mask is a personal choice, and I don’t particularly want my government telling me that I have to wear a mask. And so, I think that’s a choice that I can make. We know a lot about this virus now, we know the mortality rate’s probably less than .1%. We know that it doesn’t really affect children. If they do get it, they don’t get sick.
And so I think you gotta look at your personal circumstances, you gotta look at your surroundings, you gotta decide if that’s right for you and I’m a firm believer that that’s at this point a personal choice. And I encourage people, if they want to wear a mask, to wear a mask, but I don’t wear a mask all that often to be honest with you.
Cohost Brian Kilmeade responded, not by challenging Jackson’s anti-science lawlessness but by claimimg the science is not clear. “I would just love for medical professionals to get on the same page,” Kilmeade said, “and there’d be a lot less confusion amongst the American public.”
But hey, Kilmeade couldn’t have been less confusing about which side he picks when it’s a choice between public health during a raging pandemic and making a Trump pet look good.
You can watch Fox & Friends choose Trump over American lives below, from the July 15, 2020 Fox & Friends.
(H/T Eric Jefferson)
Jackson says, “And I encourage people, if they want to wear a mask, to wear a mask”, but Jackson’s personal practice implicitly says the opposite: ‘And I encourage people, if they don’t want to wear a mask, to not wear one.’ If one is on the fence about wearing a mask, it is unclear as to what advice Dr. Jackson would give them. Note the Trump/con-man trope, “to be honest.”
One of the wonderful things about BS World is that one can lay roughly simultaneous claims to contradictory positions. This isn’t just a politician/network adjusting his/its message to different audiences; the Trumpian mask masquerade presumes to own logic itself, thereby owning the libs.
Jackson goes back to Fox News’ imprudent February mindset of minimizing COVID: Assume that the death rate won’t increase under the strain to the medical system. If it’s going to take 2 months for wearing masks to work, why not just wait the 3 months that it will supposedly take for effective treatments?