The Slatest

Donald Trump Has a Graph Showing the U.S. Is Actually Doing Great at the Coronavirus

In a half-hour-long interview that aired Monday night, President Donald Trump again showed why the United States’ response to the coronavirus pandemic has been so disastrous. The back-and-forth with Axios’ Jonathan Swan would be comical, if it didn’t involve real lives. Instead, it’s crushing. It’s crushing to watch the president sift through printed out graphs that somehow spin the U.S. response he has presided over as anything other than a national humiliation. At one point, when presented with the reality of a runaway number of cases in the U.S., Donald Trump, America’s president, conferred with a colorful computer printout of a graph or chart or whatever absurd thing he was holding. “The United States is lowest in … numerous categories,” he stammered. “We’re lower than the world.”

The interview embodies the denialism that has the country continually debating the reality of the situation rather than doing something about it. The U.S. is approaching 5 million confirmed cases; more than 150,000 people have died. Last week, the country averaged more than 60,000 new cases each day. By comparison, in Italy, an early hot spot of the virus, on Monday there were 159 new coronavirus cases reported. The U.K. expressed concern last week about a troubling rise in new cases that has prompted it to delay some reopening measures and consider reimplementing stricter lockdown controls. It reported 928 new cases in the country on Monday.

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