Donald Trump couldn’t be bothered to address questions about safe voting during the pandemic and instead announced that “the numbers are coming down,” and that by Election Day, “we will probably be in very good shape.”
During his nearly hourlong visit to Fox & Friends today, cohost Brian Kilmeade brought up concerns about voting in person during the coronavirus pandemic.
KILMEADE: I don’t want to spend too much time on the election but looking at the pandemic, seniors and those with underlying conditions are most concerned about voting. They could be the most patriotic person in the world but, even in your age bracket, Mr. President, they're concerned about going out in a crowded area. And it’s legitimate.
So, having said that, what does the administration plan on doing to make it easier? More poll sites? Clean teams? Making – demanding more places in more areas? Providing the financing to do that?
So, if we admit there is a pandemic and a hurdle, what do you plan on doing about it if mail-in voting makes you unsettled?
Earlier in the interview (at about 6:19), Trump complained that having presidential debates start in September is too late because early voting begins almost a month sooner. But now, Trump acted as though voting is so far in the future, there's no need to worry about the pandemic.
Trump's response included a Palinesque “all of them.”
TRUMP: Brian, all of those things and more. But all of those things. And, remember, November 3rd is a long way. That’s a long way. The numbers are coming down very rapidly in Florida. They're coming down in California. They're coming down in Texas. They're coming down. Those three places shot up and those numbers are coming down. So, by the time we get there, we'll probably be in very good shape.
But all of those things, cleanliness, they'll wear the mask, they'll do whatever they have to do, but they want to vote.
We have people that really want to get out and vote. It’s going to be very safe. But, by November 3rd, you know, time wise, that’s eternity, frankly, as far as I’m concerned. For Trump, that’s eternity. And November 3rd is a long ways off. A lot of things are gonna happen.
KILMEADE: But we could have a second wave. The virus has got a mind of its own.
Second wave? Trump had thoughts only of his political health.
TRUMP: You could have a second wave. Other countries have had a second wave. You know what nobody talks about is some of these countries that were being held up as the greatest examples, they're having massive second waves now. Look at what's happening with Australia and you look at what's happening to France. Look at Spain is in a big, big second wave. Italy has got a wave going. A lot of countries are having a - but nobody ever talks about that.
We have done an incredible job in this country, an incredible job. And our testing is the best ever. The best in the world and everybody talks about it. Other than some of the fake news. They don’t like talking about it.
FACT CHECK: Coronavirus cases may be coming down somewhat in California, Florida and Texas and even in the U.S., as a whole, but they are increasing in 12 states as well as Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands. They hardly seem to be on a path to disappearance. Trump also once again made the obviously ridiculous claim that testing is responsible for the jump cases ("when you do a lot of testing you have more cases, so they say we have more cases. Well that's because we test," at about 17:38).
Speaking of testing, in this same interview (at about 16:25), Kilmeade challenged Trump on improving testing (“While we have testing, we don't have the reagents and we don't have the swabs”) thus implicitly acknowledging that our testing is not “the best in the world.”
But not one of the cohosts challenged Trump's lie about that nor his dubious claim that "we'll probably be in very good shape" by November (or next month).
You can watch it below, from the August 5, 2020 Fox & Friends.