President Donald Trump's reelection team sent cease-and-desist letters to television stations, threatening legal action if they continue to air an ad created by a liberal Super PAC that says Trump called the coronavirus a "hoax".
The ad is now running on 75 local stations, plus 11 cable systems, across Florida, Michigan, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin.
Trump's re-election campaign said that quote was referring to "Democrat criticisms and politicization of the federal response to the public health crisis" and demanded the ad be taken down for falsely asserting he used the term to describe the coronavirus. Trump is likely to address why he backed away from his idea to quarantine the NY tri-state area to contain its surge of coronavirus cases. Rather, Trump has said that Democratic efforts to politicize the virus was "their new hoax".
The US government is trying to curb the coronavirus outbreak in the country, as the United States has surpassed all other countries in the number of cases, with over 100,000 infected and at least 1,700 fatalities. "We'll keep telling the truth and holding Donald Trump accountable".
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That figure is higher than both China and hard-hit Italy, which accounts for a third of the 24,000 deaths worldwide. According to Johns Hopkins University data, 27,333 people have died due to the disease across over 170 countries.
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The Trump campaign has asked Twitter to apply its manipulated media tag to videos claiming that Trump called the virus a hoax, but the social media giant has so far declined to intervene.
Here's a sampling of what Twitter users had to say about Trump's obsession with TV ratings during an global pandemic.
The Washington Post also made a fact check of former Vice President Joe Biden for his 2020 presidential campaign and it also made a similar juxtaposition. "So I'm retweeting it", Adam Parkhomenko, a co-founder of the 2016 Ready for Hillary Super PAC, tweeted on Wednesday.
"It's one person coming in from China, and we have it under control", Trump continued then.