John King became the latest media personality on Thursday to claim that the deaths from COVID-19, which now exceed 100,000, will be “a devastating piece of the Trump legacy.” The CNN Newsroom host utilized a video montage to claim that President Trump’s inconsistencies make it even worse and that Trump is hurt by his own lack of empathy.
During the segment with Dana Bash, King declared, “There is no playbook for it and yet, part of the issue here is, he’s a few months from his own re-election, he wants to be re-elected for four more years. One hundred thousand is a devastating piece of the Trump legacy, that’s not assigning blame, that’s just history.” After saying he was not assigning blame, King then seemed to imply the opposite, “It will be, it happened on his watch and one of the issues is he has been wildly inconsistent when discussing deaths.”
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King then played a video montage of the alleged inconsistencies, but it failed to show what King said it did. For instance, one brief clip of Trump on February 24 saying, “There is a very good chance you’re not going to die.” That is still true. Another showed Trump on April 19 saying, “We’ll be at about the 60,000 mark,” which is what the University of Washington projections showed at the time and was echoed by Dr. Fauci. In fact, at the beginning, 100,000 deaths by mid-June was considered to be optimistically low by some models.
After the montage, King then played a clip put out by the Biden campaign where Biden said, “I’m so sorry for your loss. I know there is nothing I or anyone else can say or do to dull the sharpness of the pain you feel right now. But I can promise you from experience, the day will come when the memory of your loved one will bring a smile to your lips before it brings a tear to your eyes.”
King used that clip to return to a point Bash had made earlier, “You mentioned the emoting, the criticism that the president, the current president sometimes seems to lack empathy. This is, like it or not, part of the election campaign. Who do you trust? Who would you trust, who do you trust more to deal with coronavirus?”