WASHINGTON: For many Americans the daily CoronaVirus briefings were a way to find out exactly what the President, Vice President, and experts, beginning with Drs. Fauci and Birx, were encountering. And what we can expect.
And they were exhilarating examples of America’s can-do attitude. New York was fearful of not having enough beds, and in short-order the Javitz Center became a 2,500 bed hospital. (2,500-bed hospital conversion at NYC’s Javits Center opens)
Additionally, the hospital ship Comfort moved to a New York pier. A monumental achievement by our military and others that included the need to dredge the harbor to accommodate the giant ship.
President Trump has also been able to mobilize the private sector, from GM to My Pillow, to fill the need for medical equipment – from Personal Protection masks, gowns and face shields, to the more complex medical ventilators that our state and federal stores needed after they were cleaned out following the H1N1 outbreak under President Obama and Vice President Biden. Cleaned out and never replaced causing the panic when the Coronavirus attacked. (President Donald J. Trump Has Led A Historic Mobilization To Combat The Coronavirus)
The confrontational media and the Coronavirus briefings
The briefings, at least early on, included pleas from the President that we needed to work together in a non-partisan way. To put political bickering aside to seek the factual dissemination of information without the negative editorializing.
While the President, in the past, did seem to enjoy the lengthy exchanges with the handful of the press allowed into the James Brady press room. He seemed to appreciate hearing their questions, which often resulted in takeaways of information. Questions that required answering.
But it has not taken too long to realize that the Press is no more interested in providing information accurately as they were six months, a year or many years ago.
The Coronavirus Task Force Press Briefing beginning to disintegrate became something of a White House cudgel for the President who would, almost gleefully, call out reporters he sees as purveyors of fake news.
The briefing was abruptly cut short on Friday, the President remarking they were no longer “worth the effort.” The following the press ridiculously asserting that President Trump seriously suggested people drink bleach in order to combat the virus.
Instead of hours of the press sparing with the President, the president left the April 24 briefing without answering any media questions.
The President was, of course, excoriated for running away from the press. But with the press it is always selective reporting. The president was further mocked when suggesting that UV light might be a way to eradicate the virus.
The President asking Dr. Birx about the use of UV Light “internally” becoming fodder for MSNBC’s Mika to further mock the President.
Mika’s rant despite the fact that the internal use of UV light to fight virus is being looked at as an effective treatment.
Additionally, the President may have been reacting to reports from AYTU BioScience that had released a video of how UV light could be used to kill viruses “inside” the body. Since the president’s remarks, the accounts of AUTY BioScience have been removed from social media. (Aytu BioScience Suspended From Twitter, Videos Banned From YouTube Due To New York Times Reporter)
Or that in high traffic areas in public places to home air filtration, properly used, UV light can be an effect decontaminant. (Coronavirus: Robots use light beams to zap hospital viruses)
Coronavirus Task Force Briefing April 27, 2020
On the President’s Daily Schedule, a Coronavirus Task Force press briefing is scheduled for 5:00pm this evening. And hopefully, it will present a seed change in how the President handles this important dissemination of information.
UPDATE: The White House has additional testing guidance and other announcements about safely opening up America again. President @realDonaldTrump will brief the nation during a press conference this evening.
— Kayleigh McEnany (@PressSec) April 27, 2020
When it comes to the daily coronavirus briefings, the solution to the cantankerous events is not to censor the President, Vice President or the assembled experts. The solution is to disinvite the press, the scourge behind much of the misinformation and uncertainty American’s are dealing with.
The President could easily do a daily update from the Oval Office, behind the Resolute Desk, the formal seat of American power, and greatness.
With Vice President Pence to one side and Doctors Birx, Fauci and any assembled experts perched on gold fabric couches ready to offer expert information, the briefings can return to what they are meant to be. A source of information, not an opportunity for media confrontations.
Or an opportunity for the media to reinvent the President’s message to create a clickbait headline.