Apr 18, 2020
Donald Trump Coronavirus Press Conference Transcript April 18
President Donald Trump’s April 18 coronavirus task force press conference. Trump railed against the media and gun control, going after both in Saturday’s press conference.
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Donald Trump: (02:13)
Thank you very much. Good afternoon. We continue to see a number of positive signs that the virus has passed its peak. It’s been very devastating all over the world. 184 countries, probably more. This number was as of a week ago. Dr. Birx will walk through some of these trends in a few moments, but they’re very positive trends for winning. We’re going to win, we’re going to close it out. While we mourn the tragic loss of life, and you can’t mourn it any stronger than we’re mourning it, the United States has produced dramatically better health outcomes than any other country, with a possible exception of Germany. And I think we’re as good or better. On a per capita basis, remember that on a per capita basis, our mortality rate is far lower than other nations of Western Europe, with the lone exception of possibly Germany. This includes the UK, Switzerland, Belgium, the Netherlands, Italy, France. Spain, for example, has a mortality rate that is nearly four times that of the United States, but you don’t hear that. You hear we have more death, but we’re a much bigger country than any of those countries by far. So when the fake news gets out there and they start talking about the United States as number one, but we’re not number one, China’s number one, just so you understand. China is number one by a lot. It’s not even close. They’re way ahead of us in terms of death. It’s not even close. You know it, I know it, they know it, but you don’t want to report it. Why? You’ll have to explain that. Someday I’ll explain it. Since we released the guidelines to open up America again, and this was two days ago, a number of states led by both Democrat and Republican governors have announced concrete steps to begin a safe gradual and phased opening. Texas and Vermont will allow certain businesses to open on Monday while still requiring appropriate social distancing precautions.
Donald Trump: (04:37)
And I can tell you the governor of Texas, Greg Abbott, he knows what he’s doing. He’s a great governor. He knows exactly what he’s doing. Montana will begin lifting restrictions on Friday. Ohio, North Dakota, and Idaho have advised nonessential businesses to prepare for a phased opening starting May 1st. Throughout this crisis, my administration has taken unprecedented actions to rush economic relief to our citizens. As an example, you don’t hear any more about ventilators. What happened to the ventilators? And now they’re giving you the other. It’s called testing, testing, but they don’t want to use all of the capacity that we’ve created. We have tremendous capacity. Dr. Burkes will be explaining that. They know that, the governors know that. The Democrat governors know that. They’re the ones that are complaining. Through the Paycheck Protection Program, we’ve already processed nearly $350 billion to 1.6 million small businesses across the nation to keep American workers on the payroll.
Donald Trump: (05:51)
So we’re asking the Democrats to get it done. This should be bipartisan. This should be a 100% vote, and it’s really been incredible. The $350 billion that’s been approved is so popular and it’s keeping businesses open. It’ll be open, hopefully forever. Our swift action is directly supporting 30 million American jobs. Amy Wright from North Carolina as an example, said the program is a game changer for her and her family. It’s coffee shops and she has 120 employees, many of whom have developmental and intellectual disabilities, and now they’re all staying, and they’re getting paid, and she’s got a dream, and it’s going to take place very quickly when she opens again. So Amy, good luck. North Carolina, a great place. Scott and Julie Alderink help lead a church and own a restaurant in South Dakota with about 15 employees. They were already starting layoffs, layoffs were moving along rapidly, but now they’ve hired their employees back and they can keep their restaurant open and it’ll be moving quickly, very quickly as opposed to not having anybody and probably not having a place to have all of these people employed.
Donald Trump: (07:31)
She would have been out of business, she would have been gone. The Paycheck Protection Program funding is now fully drained. It’s out. It’s gone. $350 billion to small businesses, and in turn it goes to the employees of those small businesses. Lawmakers must stop blocking these funds and replenish the program without delay. The Democrats have to come on board. I used to read that these were Democrat programs, not Republican. It seems to have switched around a lot, hasn’t it, huh? Switched around a lot. The Republicans want it, I think the Democrats probably do too, but they also want other things that are unacceptable. This is about COVID, this is about the plague and what it’s done to us. This isn’t about extraneous things that they’ve been trying to get for years that our country doesn’t want them to have. As we enter the next stage of our battle, we are continuing our relentless effort to destroy the virus.
Donald Trump: (08:35)
My administration is taking steps to protect high risk communities by providing funding for 13,000 community health center sites and mobile medical stations in order to equip them with the most advanced and robust testing capabilities. These sites are incredible. What they can do is incredible. The job they do is incredible. These centers provide care to 28 million people living in medically underserved urban and rural regions, including many African American and Hispanic communities. We’re taking care of them and it’s so important because you’ve all been reading about the disproportionate numbers on African American. And you’re reading a little bit less about Hispanic, but likewise Hispanic communities, the numbers are disproportionate. In fact, we’re doing big studies on it right now. We don’t like it, it’s not right. Nationwide, we’ve now conducted over four million tests, and Debra will be talking about that. It’s double the number of conducted by any other country on earth.
Donald Trump: (09:52)
So that’s more than two times actually the number conducted by any other country on earth. You hear so much about testing. What we’ve done is incredible in testing. And I started with an obsolete broken system from a previous administration or administrations, but I would really say administration for a different reason because testing has become so advanced over the last number of years and we have the most advanced of all. I spoke with other nations this morning, the leaders and they all are talking about our great testing capability and some of them want to know what to do, how can they get involved because they need it for their own countries. In Louisiana, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, New York and other hotspots, we have also tested more people per capita by far than Italy, Spain, Germany, France and the United Kingdom, and all other major countries. So think of that. In New York for instance, per capita testing is 6% higher than in Singapore. In fact, there’s a typo. It’s 67% high. That’s a big difference. I’d say there’s a big difference between 6% and 60. I was looking and said, “6% doesn’t look too good.” It’s 67%, good job out there, higher than Singapore, 64% higher than South Korea, and 47% higher than Australia. So it’s 67% higher than Singapore, which is a very advanced place in terms of what they’re doing. My administration has also been speaking frequently with many of the governors to help them find and unlock the vast unused testing capacity that exists in their states. Dr. Burks discussed yesterday the commercial and academic laboratories in the states have tremendous unused capability which they can use. The governor should use it. Tremendous unused capability. They’re waiting for business from these governors that some of them complain. I must tell you, for the most part we’re getting along great with them, but some of them like to complain, but I still go back because the hardest thing of all by far by a factor of 20 is the ventilators. And now we’re the king of ventilators.
Donald Trump: (12:16)
We have ventilators, we’re going to be helping other countries very soon. We are going to be helping Mexico. I spoke with the president of Mexico, he’s great, a great guy, and I told him we’re going to be helping him. They desperately in Mexico need ventilators and I told him we’re going to be helping him very substantially. We’re in a position to do that. We’re building now thousands a week and they’re coming in rapidly, and they’re very, very high quality. But we’re also helping governors to develop strategies to smartly deploy their testing capacity to protect vulnerable and underserved populations while getting Americans at lower risk safely back to work. So again, we have tremendous testing capacity. Now, a lot of people like the Abbott test that we came up with. Abbott, it’s a brand new technology, brand new test. It’s great. It’s five minutes, boom, you put it in. And we’re making thousands of machines.
Donald Trump: (13:14)
Abbott is making thousands and thousands of machines, but not everybody’s going to get that one, but they’re going to get others. We have numerous platforms, which we’ll talk about in a minute. Unfortunately, some partisan voices are attempting to politicize the issue of testing, which they shouldn’t be doing because I inherited broken junk, just as they did with ventilators where we had virtually none and the hospitals were empty. For the most part, the hospitals didn’t have ventilators. We had to take care of the whole country and we did a job the likes of which nobody… We assembled an army of young, brilliant people. For the most part young, a couple of older ones, but for the most part they were young, brilliant geniuses that did a job like nobody would believe. I wish you could have seen it, around the clock.
Donald Trump: (14:09)
And now the rest of the world’s coming to us asking if we could help them with ventilators because they’re very complicated, very expensive, they’re very hard to build. And we have them coming in by the thousands. But you don’t hear that from even the governors. Nobody’s complaining about ventilators. And if there was a surge, we could have ventilators to them within hours because we have in stockpile almost 10,000 ventilators. You don’t hear about hospital beds. When I first started, everybody was talking, “Oh, hospital beds, hospital beds.” The governor of New York correctly asked me for hospital beds and we got the Army Corps of engineers out and they built them. He needed him. I know he said that we were projected. We’re not projecting New York, we’re listening to the governors. He wanted them, he needed them, and we gave him thousands of beds in Javits Center. We brought the ship.
Donald Trump: (15:02)
Then the ship, we had it converted to a COVID-19, and that was a big deal by the way because of ventilation and all the things we had to do, but we did. And fortunately for him and for us, all of us, they haven’t used either one very much because the numbers have gone down significantly, but it was there, and it was built, and it was beautiful. 2,900 beds. It was incredible what they did. They did it in a matter of a few days, but unfortunately… And it was very good. The relationship was very good and I’m frankly glad they don’t need them, but they were there. Louisiana, the same thing. I think the governor, Democrat, good guy, and he will I think tell you a story that we had more than enough.
Donald Trump: (15:52)
And I said, “Well, we’re supposed to build one more.” I told him, I said, “If we don’t have to build this hospital, it was an additional anywhere from 500 to a thousand beds. If you don’t need it, would it be possible that we don’t build it? We’d like to build it someplace else or not build it at all and save money, which is okay for government too, use it someplace else.” And he called me back the next day and he said, “Sir, we don’t need it.” I said, “That’s great that you say that. I appreciate it.” And he didn’t need it, but we were ready to go. We took good care of Louisiana. We took good care of Michigan. We took good care of every place. We didn’t miss a trick and we’re in great shape on testing. We have different platforms.
Donald Trump: (16:31)
We actually have nine different platforms and on Monday we’re going to be adding one. That’ll be nine to 10/ I don’t like to count on them before they’re up, but we’ll have anywhere from nine to 10 platforms with a tremendous testing capability and people can go, especially with phase one. Now at the same time, just like with ventilators, we’re building now the best ventilators. Just like with ventilators, our testing is getting better and better. I took the first test. The first test was not pleasant. This was not a pleasant thing. I said, “You got to be kidding” to the doctor. “You got to be kidding.” Up your nose and then we hang a right and it goes down here, and then we’ll wiggle it around here under your eye, and then we’ll pull it out and we’ll see. I said, “No, there’s no way that can happen. Is that the way it goes? You sure?”
Donald Trump: (17:27)
This was a very unpleasant test. And then I was tested a few weeks later with the new tests that just came out, the Abbott, where they just touch your nose basically, and they put it in a machine and literally a few minutes later, they tell you if you’re fine. And I was lucky in both cases because I’ve seen the damage that this does to people. But we have great tests. They’ve really gotten better, and better, and better as we go along, but we have a tremendous lab capability, laboratory capability all over the country. And for some reason, the governors, a lot of them are-
Donald Trump: (18:03)
For some reason the governors, they’re not, a lot of them are, but some of the governors like to complain and they’re not using it. We have tremendous capability. We’re ready for them. And as we go along, just like with the ventilators, we’ll get better, more advanced, and we’ll be able to do things that nobody would have even believed possible. But we started off with a broken system. We inherited a broken, terrible system. And I always say it, our cupboards were bare. We had very little in our stockpile. Now we’re loaded up. And we also loaded up these hospitals. And we’re talking about payment. We gave billions of dollars worth of things to hospitals, and we’ll have to work that out at some point. In fact, I guess they’re going to be working that out with Congress. But we loaded up hospitals, the federal government loaded up hospitals with things to take care of people that are very desperately, or were not … We weren’t worried about payment at that time. We said, “You’ll take care of it at the right time.”
Donald Trump: (19:03)
But we gave billions and billions and billions of dollars worth of medical goods, and medicines, and equipment to hospitals and we’ll work it out with them. But people don’t like to talk about that. So we have done a job that nobody believed. This was a military and private enterprises march. We marched. And unfortunately, with the other side, because they’re viewing it as an election. “How did President Trump do?” “Oh, he did terribly. Let’s see. He did, yeah, he did terribly.” Oh, but we just got them the ventilators that they didn’t have that they should have had. We just got them hospital beds by the thousands. We just got them testing that they don’t even know how to use.
Donald Trump: (19:57)
In some cases, they have machines that they’re only using 5% and 10% of the machine because they have an advanced machine and they don’t know how to use it. It can do much more. So we’ve had people explain how to use it. So, I don’t know. I don’t think I do that on the other side. I don’t, I really don’t. I think that here we have a crisis that we have to work together and I hope we’re going to work together. But we’re moving along and we’re moving along well. We’re moving along well. This should not be a partisan witch hunt, like the Russia witch hunt that turned out to be a total phony deal.
Donald Trump: (20:38)
Unfortunately, some of these voices, though, are attempting to to bring this into politics and whether it’s testing, or ventilators, or hospital beds, or other dimensions of our sweeping public health response, we have had a sweeping response. And speaking to the leaders of other countries this morning, they said, “This is incredible the way you’ve done this so quickly.” We’re only talking about a few weeks since everybody knew this was such a big problem. And the rest of the world is watching and they respect what we’ve done, because I don’t think anybody else, I know nobody else could have done what we have done. And we started with garbage. As our experts said yesterday, America’s testing capability and capacity is fully sufficient to begin opening up the country totally.
Donald Trump: (21:34)
Indeed, our system is by far the most robust and advanced anywhere in the world by far. The rest of the world will tell you that. I spoke this morning to a friend of mine, President Moon of South Korea. He just won the election. He won it by a lot. He had a big victory, which I was happy about. And he was saying what a great job we’ve done in this country. I told him the same thing. He said what a great job we’ve done here in this country. So I appreciated that. By the way, he had a great victory and we’re very happy about that from the standpoint of our country working very well with them, South Korea.
Donald Trump: (22:13)
As we approach and the approach that we use, but as we approach, hopefully the downward side of what’s going on, I think you’re going to see some incredible hard facts and evidence that what we did was right. There’s a lot of talk about heard, the word heard. I don’t want to show you charts of people that went a different way, but it’s scary. It’s scary. We would have had, I think, millions of people die, had we done a different way. And I think numbers are just coming out where they’re estimating 60,000 people will die. That’s horrible. I always say one person is too much, especially in this case, when it could have been stopped in China. Could have been stopped in China before it started. And it wasn’t. And the whole world is suffering because of it.
Donald Trump: (23:05)
But this heard concept and everybody had to think of it at the beginning because, look, look at us. We had the greatest economy in the history of the world. Better than China, better than any country in the world, better than any country’s ever had. We had the highest stock market in history by far, and I’m honored by the fact that it has started to go up very substantially. That’s because the market is smart. The market is actually brilliant. I’ve seen it. And they’re viewing it like we’ve done a good job. They view it that way because if you would’ve told me that we’re at 24,000 or beyond, and the highest we were ever was, we never hit 30. We were getting close to 30, so let’s say around 29,000. We were at 24. We were heading down, I started to say, “Oh wow, we may be heading into territory where I started.” I didn’t like that. Now we’re way up.
Donald Trump: (24:02)
But if you would’ve said to me, with what we’ve gone through, not caused by our country or our people, or any … Not caused by certainly anybody within our country. But if you would’ve said that after going through this horrible plague that we’d have a stock market that’s much, much higher than when I started, much higher than where I started. And I think we have tremendous momentum when we have a big election coming up. But I think we have tremendous momentum. First we get rid of the plague and because of what we’re doing with the PPP, what we’re doing with the paycheck, as we call it, I think we have a chance to have these companies get back to action quickly.
Donald Trump: (24:52)
But our approach to testing is based on facts, data, and very hard evidence, not partisan agendas or coordinated political talking points. Mike Pence, who’s a phenomenal guy, he’s making the commencement address right now at the Air Force Academy where they’re being very politically correct. Everyone’s sending not six feet but 10 feet apart. Okay? And it’s very different. I made that speech last year. I’m going to West Point. I think they’re changing the date to June 13th because of what’s going on in New York. They’re moving it to June 13th, West Point. So I’m doing that commencement speech. And they’re going to have … it’s sad because … but it’s a big start. They’re going to have the cadets, they may not have the parents, but they’re going to have the cadets. The parents are so proud of them.
Donald Trump: (25:40)
I know at the Air Force Academy where Mike is speaking right now, they don’t have the parents, they have the cadets, they have a very, very wide spread. And you talk about social distancing, they are really spread. I looked at it, they’re using 10 feet. So he’s doing that. But they’re having it. It’s very important to have it. And that’s a great thing. That’s a great thing. That’s a big start. So he’s there right now and I will tell you he’s a gentleman, Mike Pence, a real gentleman.
Donald Trump: (26:14)
And they requested, the Democrat senators requested, a phone call with him yesterday. And I think they had, for the most part, all of them on, approximately 47. I heard it was just about all of them, whatever it might be. I don’t be wanting to be wrong by one, or two, or 10 and have the press say, “He lied.” That, “He told a lie. Terrible, terrible.” Whatever it was. But they have 47 and I guess most of them were on. I heard they were so rude. I used the term today. I said rude and nasty. But I heard they was so rude, no matter what he said, which was all very positive in terms of winning this battle against the invisible enemy. No matter what he said, they were fresh, they were nasty, and it was, I heard, just a terrible thing.
Donald Trump: (27:09)
And I said, “Mike, that’s politics. That’s what it is. If we came into this room today and said, ‘The battle is over, we have won.’ It’s 100% gone. The Democrats would say, ‘The President has done a horrible job. He has done a disgraceful job. It is a shame how bad he is.’ This is the talking points. This is political.” And it would be nice not to have that. Especially when we’ve done the job we’ve done. All you have to do is look at the big V for victory or V for ventilator. Take a look at it. Everybody said they had us on that. They had us.
Donald Trump: (27:49)
They thought they had us, but we got them done at numbers that nobody would have believed. And we did use our act, our Production Act. And we used it. But we didn’t use it. We didn’t need it like a hammer. All we had to do, for the most part, we used it actually in a number of cases, but the most part, all we had to do is talk about it. All we had to do is say, “We’re going to use it if you don’t do this.” And everybody was, for the most part, good. We used it a couple of times because it didn’t work out the easy way, but it worked out the hard way.
Donald Trump: (28:18)
But whether it was masks or ventilators, it was incredible what we’ve been able to do. So this is a very critical time for the American people and the American people deserve real information and responsible and thoughtful dialogue from their elected leaders and from the media. The media has been, some very honest, but some very dishonest, you know that. You know that. I even read a story where Mark Meadows, this is a tough guy. He was crying, he was crying. There was Maggie Haberman, she won a Pulitzer Prize for her coverage of Russia. But she was wrong in Russia. So was everyone else. They should all give back their Pulitzer Prizes.
Donald Trump: (28:57)
In fact, it turned out that the crime was committed by the other side. The crime was not committed by this side. It was committed by the other side, a bunch of bad people. You saw the reports coming out over the last two weeks, they got caught. So Maggie Haberman gets a Pulitzer Prize. She’s a third-rate reporter, New York Times. And we put her name up here last week. You saw that. People thought it was a commercial. It wasn’t a commercial. It was like a commercial, but it wasn’t a commercial. It was just clips. And because we exposed her as being a bad reporter, what happened is she came out and said, “Mark Meadows was crying.” And they made it sound, I said, “Mark.” And it’s okay if he did, I wouldn’t look. But I think he was crying probably, really, for the wrong reason, they had it down. But he’s not a crier. And if he was, I know criers. I could tell you people that you know that are very famous, they cry. And that’s okay, too.
Donald Trump: (29:57)
But it was a nasty story in so many ways. It was fake news and she only did it because we exposed her for being a terrible, dishonest reporter. She is. I’ve known her for a long while. I haven’t spoken to her a long time. I made the mistake. I take a picture with her at the desk a long time ago. Every time she does the story if I say … I haven’t spoken to her in long, many, many, many months, maybe years. I don’t speak to her. She’s fake. A lot of people are fake. A lot of people. We got a lot of fake people. But what happens is she writes this story as retribution, puts it in the New York Times. And the New York Times is a very dishonest newspaper. It’s my opinion. It’s not an opinion. It’s actually, from my standpoint, the very hard thing to figure though, most people wouldn’t know that. But I know it because I know the facts.
Donald Trump: (30:47)
And they make up, I said it today, they make up words. “Sources say … ” The most often used. “Sources say … ” You know what sources say, man? Sources say means they have nobody and they make it up. Okay? And they have a few other type statements that mean the same thing. But, “Sources say … ” is the most often used [inaudible 00:31:09] in the Washington Post, New York Times especially, CNN. Fake news, CNN. They should really be mandated, and I mean mandated to use a name. If there’s a source, use the name. Say that Kayleigh, Kayleigh McEnany said. Or somebody. And you’d find out that, number one, the source wouldn’t say it. The sources don’t exist. I don’t believe the sources exist. And I try and tell this. The beautiful thing about doing these conferences is that we have tremendous numbers of viewers and I’m able to reach the viewers without having to go through fake news where they make a good story into a bad story.
Donald Trump: (31:51)
So with all of that, it’s been an incredible period of time. We’ve done a fantastic job. We’re the talk of other nations. The leaders of other nations are calling us for help. They’re calling us for equipment. They’re calling us for testing capacities. Now with the testing, we are going further. Deborah is going to talk about that now. With the testing, we have some other tests coming up that are going to be, I think, phenomenal. I think they’re going to blow away everything as soon as they come out. And we’re going to get them out as soon as possible. But I’d like to ask Dr. Birx to come up and say a few words about where we’ve come, how far we’ve come, and more importantly where we’re going from this point. Because honestly it’s quite amazing. Thank you very much.
Dr. Deborah Birx: (32:42)
Thank you Mr. President. If we could have the first slide, I wanted to give you an update on where we are as states, and as counties, and as cities. I know you all are watching carefully. The numbers have shifted over the last few days. What happens when nations, when states change the reporting from confirmed to probable, so now all probable cases are included. They had to add them back in even though the cases may have been from March, they were added over 14, 15, and 16th of April. And states may continue to be adding them.
Dr. Deborah Birx: (33:20)
Eventually, we’re hoping that those get accounted for on the day when the presumptive cases or the probable cases were counted. But right now they’re added in in one fell swoop. So this is New York and New Jersey. And I think we all know how difficult, and what a difficult time both new New York and New Jersey have had. I call your attention to the axis. It goes up the 250,000 cases, so you can get a frame of how we’re talking about some of the other metro areas. Next slide.
Dr. Deborah Birx: (33:51)
These are the 25 metro areas, the top 25 metro areas, and you can only see the New York metro area in this slide. Again, the axis goes up to about 300,000, includes the New Jersey part of the metro area as well as part of southern Connecticut. Next slide.
Dr. Deborah Birx: (34:13)
But if I take New York out, and the reason I wanted to do that, now the axis is one 10th of the previous axis, so that previous slide, 300,000. This slide 30,000. So that will give you a frame of reference for some of these other metros. The reason I wanted to show you this is this is cumulative cases. And we are still tracking very closely the issues in Chicago and Boston. But on this slide I hope you can see the yellow line. That is Detroit. And Detroit and this mayor of Detroit has really done an extraordinary job. And the people of Detroit have done an extraordinary job with their social distancing.
Dr. Deborah Birx: (34:55)
The other line I want to call your attention to is the line here. This is New Orleans. And I think, frankly, I was concerned about New Orleans because they had a lot of preexisting comorbidities. They have two or three major hospitals, but cover a very large area, a geographic area. And that other blue line that you can see that’s down right here. That’s the Seattle line. And you can see that, their response, because of the nursing home alert, they were one of the first states and the first metro areas to really move to social distancing. And so they’ve really never had a peak like many of the other metros. Next slide.
Dr. Deborah Birx: (35:43)
Then I just want to take you through some of these new case graphics. That was cumulative cases. This is daily cases. And obviously there’s a lot of variability and variability in reporting, but you get a sense over time when you look at daily cases. So New Orleans is on the panel on your left, and Baton Rouge on your right. But you-
Dr. Deborah Birx: (36:03)
… Panel on your left, and Baton Rouge on your right. But you can see clearly in New Orleans about a month ago, very low levels, probably less than 50 cases, large peak and spike around the beginning of April, and they have come down. And they have it down to very few cases. Again, I showed you before how both their syndromic cases have come down, as well as their actual number of cases. Next slide. This is Seattle. So you can see they had a much lower peak, and this is when we talk about flattening the curve. This is what flattening the curve looks like. It becomes a longer, slower decline, but it never gets very high, and then goes back down. Next slide. And then this is Detroit, and we always look at the metros as a consolidated. So this is both Wayne and Oakland in Michigan, and we really want to thank the mayor for the incredible job that they have done to really ensure that everyone is receiving the adequate health care and testing. And they’ve done quite a good job with testing in Michigan.
Dr. Deborah Birx: (37:08)
But all of these states, Louisiana and New York have tested 30,000 per million inhabitants. Those are some of our highest numbers across the board. Next slide. The president talked about on the case fatality rates, and we have lost a lot of Americans to this disease, and we pray and hope for each one of them that are in the hospitals, and the excellent care. What does this graph illustrate, is the amazing work of the American people to really adhere to social distancing. This was nothing we had ever attempted to do as a nation, and the world hadn’t attempted to do. But they were able to decrease the number of cases so that in general, most of the metro areas never had an issue of complete crisis care of all of their hospitals in a region. So you can see our case fatality rate is about half to a third of many of the other countries.
Donald Trump: (38:09)
Excuse me. Does anybody really believe this number? Does anybody really believe this number?
Dr. Deborah Birx: (38:16)
I put China on there so you could see how basically unrealistic this could be. When highly developed health care delivery systems of the United Kingdom, and France, and Belgium, and Italy, and Spain, with extraordinary doctors and nurses and equipment have case fatality rates in the twenties, up to 45, and Belgium is extraordinarily competent health care delivery system, and then China at 0.33, you realize that these numbers, even, and this includes the doubled number out of Wuhan. So I want really to put it in perspective, but I wanted you also to see how great the care has been for every American that has been hospitalized. And the extraordinary work of our doctors and nurses, and our laboratorians on the front line who have been doing an excellent job. Next slide. Then we also wanted to show-
Donald Trump: (39:09)
Also, the number for Iran. Does anybody really believe that number? You see what’s going on. Put that slide back, if you would. Does anybody believe this number? Does anybody believe this number? You saw more bags on television than that.
Dr. Deborah Birx: (39:27)
This is why the reporting is so important. And I think you remember almost six weeks ago, maybe a month ago, I was telling you what Italy was showing to us, and what France was telling to us. And the warnings that they gave to us, and said, be very careful. There’s an extraordinary high mortality among people with preexisting conditions, and we used their information to bring that to the American people. That came, that alert, that alert before we even had significant cases, came from our European colleagues on the front line. And that’s why we keep coming back to how important in a pandemic, and a new disease. It’s really critical to have that level of transparency, because it changes how we work as a nation. It allowed us over March 15th to make an alert out there about vulnerable individuals, and really the need to protect them, and my call out to millennials to really protect their parents, protect their grandparents, and get that information out to everyone that there were preexisting conditions that put people at greater risk. That information came from our European colleagues, who were in the midst of their battle themselves.
Dr. Deborah Birx: (40:36)
And so there is never an excuse to not share information. When you are the first country to have an outbreak, you really have a moral obligation to the world, to not only talk about it, but provide that information that’s critical to the rest of the world to really respond to this credibly. And I really want to thank our European colleagues who worked so hard to get us that information, even in the midst of their own tragedies. And I think that really shows how important transparency is. And we go to the next slide. We’re going to show you this really encouraging and great news. So we know that fatalities will continue to lag, because people are in hospitals still, and some are still in intensive care units, but these COVID-like illnesses. This is our hospitalizations that are related to flu per 100,000 Americans. This is this year’s flu season. And you can see our COVID-like illnesses, and this is all of them, probable, and confirmed cases. Our hospitalizations are declining.
Dr. Deborah Birx: (41:38)
Now I showed you metros that have made tremendous progress. And we’ve been up here many times talking about it being six, 10, 15 additional cities, and now we’re really just focused on Chicago, and Boston, and Massachusetts, and really some issues, Providence is starting to improve now. Their relationship to the two large outbreak cities. But this is really reassuring to us of the progress we’re making across the country against this disease, and I just really want to conclude by thanking again the American people for making these types of graphics possible. Thank the data team who puts these together for me, so they are working until about 3:30 every morning to make sure that we have the most up-to-date information. That’s the data that goes to our supply chain individuals, to ensure that every hospital, in every state, and every community has what they need based on data, and to make sure that we’re serving the needs of the American people as effectively as possible. Thank you, Mr. President.
Donald Trump: (42:45)
Thank you very much Deborah, fantastic job. Take this. Thank you very much. The fact is, that we’ve been learning a lot from Deborah, and Tony, and so many of the professionals, the director, PEPFAR, we’re spending the United States for that help, to the best of my knowledge, mostly in Africa, $6 billion a year. And that’s on AIDS. What we’ve done for AIDS in Africa is unbelievable. We spend $6 billion a year. That’s been going on for long time. Nobody knows that. You’ve never heard that. I’ve never heard that. $6 billion a year. Millions of people are living right now, and living very comfortably because of the fact that we have found the answer to that horrible, horrible plague. That was a plague. But we spend $6 billion a year. And from what I hear, it’s very well spent, done by professionals, including this great professional right here. That was the thing that you worked hardest on, and something that was very close to her heart.
Donald Trump: (44:02)
So it’s something that I think people should start hearing. The World Health Organization, we’re just finding more and more problems, and we spend this money really well. There are other ways we can spend the $500 million, that’s 500 million. This is six billion, but we can find other ways to spend it where people are going to be helped in a much greater way. We’re doing some research on certain people that take a lot of credit for what they do, and NIH is giving away a lot of money. A lot of money. We give away, for years, for many years, they give away a lot of money. And some people complain, and some people don’t. Some people are extremely happy, so we’re looking into that also. They’re giving away approximately, as I understand it recently, more than $32 billion a year, 32 billion. And so we’ve been looking at that for a while, and we’re going to be having some statements to be made about that. $32 billion a year. It’s a lot of money, and we want to make sure it’s being spent wisely.
Donald Trump: (45:14)
And we’ve been doing that, by the way. And we’ll have some statements on that. And those are much bigger numbers than what we’re talking about with national, if you look, with our friends from wherever they come from. 500 million is a lot of money, but it’s not a lot compared to the kind of money that we give out. I think over the years it’s been averaging about $32 billion, 32 billion. So we’ve had our eye on that one for a while. We also talked about the lab in China where I guess 3.7 million was given some time ago. And we’re looking at that very closely. Chief of staff has that pretty much under control, but it’s money that too bad it got spent there. But that was spent, what year was that, Mark? It was four or five years ago.
Six years ago.
Donald Trump: (46:13)
Six years ago approximately. So we’re looking at that. And that’s the lab that people are talking about. All right. So we’re looking at a lot of things, this tremendous waste in our government. We found it in many different ways, and in many different forms. And this is one of them. This is one of them. We can spend, I was talking to Dr. Burks. We can spend $500 million using all of it in a much more efficient manner if we choose to do that, and it’ll be to the good of many more people than are getting it right now. But you look at the mistakes that were made. I mean so late, long after I said we have to close off our country, they were actually against our closing off our country to China. When I did that in January, they were against that. They didn’t like the idea of closing off our country. They said there was a bad thing to do actually. And they’ve since taken that back.
Donald Trump: (47:08)
But it was a very lucky thing that we did it, very lucky. We would have had numbers that were very significantly greater. Tony Fauci said that, he said it would have been very significantly greater had we not done that. So we made a lot of moves that were good moves. But it’s still a very depressing subject, because it’s a lot of death. And if it was stopped very early on at the source, before it started blowing into these proportions, we have 184 countries that would have been in a lot better shape. But our country is getting back, and I expect that we’re going to be bigger, better, and stronger than ever before. I will take a few questions. Jeff.
Mr. President, you’ve mentioned, and the doctor’s mentioned China a few times today, clearly suggesting that the data has not been good.
Donald Trump: (47:58)
Well you tell me, do you think that data is good when you see that? Do you think that’s correct, okay? Do you honestly believe that’s correct?
It’s a pretty dramatic contrast. So my question-
Donald Trump: (48:07)
Dramatic. Yeah, I’d say it’s dramatic.
So my question to you, sir, is-
Donald Trump: (48:11)
Why didn’t the press, why didn’t you people figure that out though? Why do we have to put up a chart? It’s an impossible number to hit, but why haven’t you come up and said that?
The question, sir is, is China now cooperating with United States to figure out what happened, and what do you want from them now?
Donald Trump: (48:30)
Well, they said they’re doing an investigation, that they’re doing an investigation. So let’s see what happens with their investigation. But we’re doing investigations also. Yeah, go ahead please.
Speaker 2: (48:41)
You’ve spoken, we heard Dr Burks a moment ago say that every country has a responsibility to tell the rest of the world what’s going on. You’ve talked repeatedly about how this could have been stopped in the past. I know you don’t want to telegraph what you would do, but do you think that there should be some consequences if in the end, China was responsible for all of this?
Donald Trump: (49:03)
Well if they were knowingly responsible, certainly. If it was a mistake, a mistake is a mistake. But if they were knowingly responsible? Yeah. Then there should be consequences. You’re talking about potentially lives like nobody’s seen, since 1917. And the other thing, had we not done what we did in terms of closing, because there is that concept of let’s let it ride, but at some point, I’m going to have to, I don’t want to embarrass the countries that I like, and leaders that I like. But you have to see some of these numbers. In my opinion, so we’re talking about maybe 60,000 or so. That’s a lot of people. But 100,000 was the minimum we thought that we could get to, and we will be lower than that number. Anywhere from a hundred to 220,000 people. But I really believe it could have been millions of people had we not done what we did. We made a lot of good decisions. But one of those things, go ahead.
Speaker 3: (50:04)
Have you ruled out that this was an unknowing situation?
Donald Trump: (50:10)
I haven’t ruled out anything. I want to look at the facts as they come in. I want to look at the facts. Please.
Doug Christian: (50:15)
Thank you sir. Thank you very much, Mr. President.
Donald Trump: (50:17)
Doug Christian: (50:18)
Last week you claimed that you were charged of everything. Yet the American people don’t understand why you’re unwilling to use the awesome powers of your presidency to make American companies manufacturer the PPE, and also the testing equipment that you need to implement-
Donald Trump: (50:32)
Who are you with?
Doug Christian: (50:33)
Implement your recommendations-
Donald Trump: (50:35)
I know, but who are you with?
Doug Christian: (50:37)
I’m with TMN. Recommendations for-
Donald Trump: (50:39)
TMN. What is TMN?
Doug Christian: (50:41)
Talk Media News.
Donald Trump: (50:42)
Doug Christian: (50:43)
My name is Doug Christian with Talk Media News.
Donald Trump: (50:46)
Talk Media News.
Doug Christian: (50:47)
Donald Trump: (50:47)
Go ahead, keep reading your question.
Doug Christian: (50:50)
The thing is, how to make companies build these testing equipment so that you can do what you want, what you’ve recommended.
Donald Trump: (51:01)
We’re doing that right now. We’re doing it. We’re doing that right now with ventilators. We have General Motors, we have General Electric, we have 11 different companies, great companies building them for us, all over the United States. We’re starting to make our own gowns, as they call it. We’re making some incredible things. And as far as the testing is concerned, most of that now is done in the United States. We’re doing it in the United States, our different platforms. So I just don’t think you were listening.
Doug Christian: (51:27)
But senators were complaining-
Donald Trump: (51:29)
Doug Christian: (51:30)
To Vice president Pence yesterday-
Donald Trump: (51:31)
Doug Christian: (51:33)
Independent Senator Angus King.
Donald Trump: (51:35)
He’s not an independent, okay. Angus King is worse than any Democrat. Go ahead.
Doug Christian: (51:39)
But he said that he was livid, actually.
Donald Trump: (51:42)
Of course he said that. Because he’s a Democrat, okay. Angus King is not an independent. He uses that term for whatever reason. It’s a waste of time.
Doug Christian: (51:52)
But he’s not a very emotive type of senator.
Donald Trump: (51:52)
Oh, yes he is. You haven’t seen him. Okay? You haven’t seen him? No. Angus King is a Democrat, and that was totally staged. I heard that, and it was totally staged. Just like you read the question, he read his question. Yeah. Please, in the back.
Speaker 4: (52:06)
Mr. President, I wanted to ask you about one of your retweets.
Donald Trump: (52:12)
Speaker 4: (52:13)
The one you retweeted from Paul Sperry. Let’s see if authorities enforce the social distancing orders for mosques during Ramadan, like they did churches during Easter. I’m wondering-
Donald Trump: (52:25)
No, I would like to see that. And I just spoke with leaders, and people that love mosques. They love mosques, and I’m all in favor of that. But I would say that there could be a difference, and we’ll have to see what will happen, because I’ve seen a great disparity in this country. I’ve seen a great disparity. I mean I’ve seen a very strong anti-Israel bent in Congress, with Democrats. It was unthinkable seven or eight or 10 years ago, and now they’re into a whole different thing, between Omar, and AOC. I say AOC plus three, add them on. You have, I mean the things that they say about Israel are so bad. And I can’t believe it. Just a minute. So I would be interested to see that, because they go after Christian churches, but they don’t tend to go after mosques. And I don’t want them to go after mosques, but I do want to see what their bent is. Yes, please, in the back.
Speaker 5: (53:23)
Do you know, Mr. President-
Donald Trump: (53:24)
Go ahead, please.
Speaker 5: (53:25)
That in fact you’re suggesting that imams wouldn’t follow social distancing?
Donald Trump: (53:28)
I just had a call with imams, I just had a call with ministers, rabbis. We had a tremendous call with the faith leaders. No, I don’t think that at all. I am somebody that believes in faith. And it matters not what your faith is, but our politicians seem to treat different faiths very differently, and they seem to think, and I don’t know what happened with our country, but the Christian faith is treated much differently than it was, and I think it’s treated very unfairly. Yes, please go ahead in the back.
Speaker 6: (54:01)
I just want to ask-
Donald Trump: (54:02)
Speaker 6: (54:02)
If the Department of Justice will in fact…
Donald Trump: (54:02)
Please go ahead in the back. Let’s go. OAN please.
Speaker 7: (54:06)
Mr. President, the paycheck protection program saved an estimated 15 million jobs. It’s run out of money. The Democrats, specifically Nancy Pelosi, have been blocking that funding. Do you know why speaker Pelosi is dragging her feet on that?
Donald Trump: (54:20)
Well, she thinks it’s politics. I don’t think it’s good politics. Nancy Pelosi has been blocking it. Schumer has been blocking it. And I think they think it’s good politics. I don’t think it’s good politics. I think it’s bad politics, but I don’t care about the politics. It’s so great for our country because we’re going to have all of these companies that are going to be… it’s a bigger employer… let’s say it’s the same, but essentially it’s the same power, all of these small businesses added together, as the big companies. It’s about 50/50. And it’s so important. And they will be scattered if we weren’t able to do what we’re doing.
Donald Trump: (54:55)
And essentially we’re giving these small businesses that won’t make it. They can’t because they’re closed. We’re giving them money to take care of their employees, so when we open, they can get back into business. It’s been a very popular plan even with Democrats. I think it basically passed unanimously twice. The first section, which is 350 billion. So we’re trying to get 250. Nancy Pelosi’s blocking it. She sits in her house in San Francisco, overlooking the ocean and she doesn’t want to come back. She doesn’t want to come back. She doesn’t want to come back to DC. She’s got to get back and get this thing approved. It’s very important.
Donald Trump: (55:32)
Please go ahead.
Speaker 8: (55:34)
Dr. Birx, if I may. You again praised the American people for doing their bit over the past few weeks. So what goes through your mind when you see photographs of crowded beaches in Florida? Is that a concern for when we start seeing some of these restrictions being lifted?
Dr. Birx: (55:50)
Well, as I described, we go Metro by Metro, County by County and so I’d have to link that with a specific County and look at their case rates. I believe the governor and the public health system that Florida has, they have some of the best County public health individuals I have ever had to deal with. They are amazing, as I had to work with them under HIV AIDS. So if the County health directors believe that that’s appropriate for their County, then I’m not going to second judge an individual’s approach to this. Because I can’t see into every single County and load the low rates. I can just see there’s no cases. So I don’t know if that’s a County with very small cases or not, but I think their County health official would know.
Donald Trump: (56:36)
Many of the counties as you know, are really free of this horrible enemy. So we’re opening up. You’ll be seeing a lot of this country start to open up fairly quickly. Yes, please.
Speaker 9: (56:50)
Thank you, Mr. President. You’ve mentioned the importance of social distancing, but for example, Stephen Morrison, when you appointed to your open the country task force, is organizing a protest in Wisconsin, but aren’t they in a sense protesting your very own guidelines?
Donald Trump: (57:07)
Well, we have a flexibility. I didn’t see what Stephen said. I can tell you is a very good economist. He’s been calling shots right.
Speaker 9: (57:13)
He said, sorry. He said, “We need to be the Rosa Parks of government injustices.”
Donald Trump: (57:19)
Well, there is a lot of injustice. When you look at a Virginia where they want to take your guns away, they want to violate your second amendment. When you look at… look, I’m getting along very nicely with the governor of Michigan, but she has things, don’t buy paint, don’t buy roses. She’s got all these crazy things. I really believe somebody sitting in their boat in a lake should be okay. They shouldn’t arrest people. Some of them are being unreasonable. I really believe that they’re being unreasonable.
Donald Trump: (57:52)
But I think Virginia is a great case though, because they’re using this… they’re trying to take your guns away in Virginia. And if people in Virginia aren’t careful, that’s what’s going to happen to them. So yeah, I mean I could see where he’s coming from. I think it’s a strong statement, strong statement, because hopefully this will be over very soon for all of us. But some have gotten carried away. They have absolutely gotten carried away.
Speaker 9: (58:16)
Do you feel some of these protesters are protesting your social distancing guidelines?
Donald Trump: (58:21)
I don’t know. I notice there are a lot of protests out there and I think that some of the governors have gotten carried away. We have a lot of people that don’t have to be told to do what they’re doing. They’ve been really doing everything we’ve asked them. We have a few States where, frankly, I spoke to the governors and I could have gotten him to do, if I wanted to do what would have been perhaps politically correct, but they’ve been doing incredibly anyway. And as one of them said, “Everybody’s doing exactly the same. In fact, our record is better than States where they’re under a mandate or where they’ve agreed to do certain things.”
Donald Trump: (58:58)
Now we have some great States out there. We have incredible people in our country, and for the most part, it’s a strong statement, but I understand where he’s coming from. And I think one of the really important places that people really have to start looking at is what’s going on in Virginia, because that’s a mess with really a governor that’s under siege anyway. Yeah, please.
Speaker 10: (59:19)
Thank you, sir.
Donald Trump: (59:19)
No, with a beautiful head of white hair. Go ahead. I’ll tell you if I like his hair in about a minute, after he asks the question.
Speaker 11: (59:26)
[Inaudible 00:59:26] with the Wall Street Journal. On that point though, does the tweeting about, in the case of Virginia and linking the second amendment to some of these issues about lifting some of these restrictions in these States, not potentially pose a concern for the governors and civil unrest and potentially [inaudible 00:59:44]? I have a second question, too.
Donald Trump: (59:46)
Well I think just for that question, I think that’s an easy one. That’s not even politics. We’re entitled to a second amendment and he’s trying to take the second amendment… meaning that state is trying to take… the Democrats in that state. The Republicans are fighting it. They’re trying to take that second amendment right away. To me that’s Liberty. When I say liberate Virginia, I would say liberate Virginia when that kind of thing happens and where does it all stop? So I think it’s a very good analogy.
Donald Trump: (01:00:14)
Speaker 11: (01:00:16)
Is this the right time to bring in a second amendment issue?
Donald Trump: (01:00:18)
I think when they talk about taking your guns away and if you notice, at the beginning of this pandemic, there were more guns sold, I think, than it almost any time in history. So it’s obviously a big issue. And then you have them working and signing documents trying to take your second amendment away essentially. So I do think it’s an appropriate time to bring it up.
Donald Trump: (01:00:42)
Go ahead. Go ahead. Second.
Speaker 11: (01:00:43)
This past week we’ve had an extraordinary slew of events from adversaries, North Korea, Russia, China and Iran all pushing back on US policy, or toying with US military forces. What’s your messages in these countries who may be trying to take advantage?
Donald Trump: (01:00:58)
I don’t see it. No, I don’t see it. We had a very good relationship with Russia. We worked on the oil deal together. I was with, by telephone, King of Saudi Arabia and the president of Russia, Vladimir Putin. We worked out a deal on oil. That was a very important deal to them and to us and to Saudi Arabia. It was in a deadlock. You know it. You covered it very well. Actually, the Wall Street Journal covered that very well. I worked with Putin and with the King on that and President Putin was a total gentleman and it was very important to get that done and the King was great.
Donald Trump: (01:01:35)
And we actually had to bring in Mexico because Mexico was a lone hold out and they showed great flexibility. You know the story. No, I think we’re doing fine. Yeah sure, North Korea, I see they’re testing short range missiles, been doing it a long time. I received a nice note from him recently. It was a nice note. I think we’re doing fine. Look, if I wasn’t elected, you would right now be at war with North Korea. Okay. I’ll tell you for your people that don’t understand the world and they don’t understand how life works. If I wasn’t elected, you would right now, maybe the war would be over, hopefully with a victory. But if you remember when I first came in, we didn’t have ammunition. Not a good way to fight a war. President Obama left us no ammunition. Okay. And he left us virtually no medical and ventilators. He left us, the cupboard was dry, right? The cupboard was dry. No, I think right now you’d be at war, essentially in some form, be over, it would be raging with North Korea, if I weren’t president. And we’re doing just fine with North Korea, just fine. Let’s see how it all ends up. In the meantime they said, “Oh, Trump’s given up.” And then you say, “Oh, really? What’s he given up?” And they said, “I don’t know.” Then they said, “He met.” “Oh, I met. I met.” No, I have a good relationship with Kim Jong-un. That’s not a bad thing to have a good relationship. Obama wanted a relationship. He wouldn’t meet with Obama, wouldn’t meet with him. Okay. I have a good relationship with him. We met at the line. I stepped over the line the first time, anything like that’s ever… it’s all good. It’s good.
Donald Trump: (01:03:11)
But when they say, the stupid people, I call them stupid people or the haters, they say, “Trump’s given up so much.” Really? I’ve actually increased the sanctions. China’s been very good on the border. In fact, right now the border is stone cold closed between China and North Korea. Our relationship with China was good until they did this. Once we found out about this, once we found out, look, we just made a trade deal where China is going to have to buy $250 billion a year in our product, 50 billion from the farmers, 40 to 50 billion from the farmers. The relationship was good when we were signing that, but then all of a sudden you hear about this. So it’s a big difference.
Donald Trump: (01:03:50)
The question was asked, would you be angry at China? Well, the answer might very well be a very resoundingly yes, but it depends. Was it a mistake that got out of control or was it done deliberately? Okay. There’s a big difference between those two. In either event, they should have let us go in. We asked to go in very early and they didn’t want us in. I think they were embarrassed. I think they knew it was something bad and I think they were embarrassed.
Donald Trump: (01:04:18)
No, I think we’re doing very well. So you said Russia, you said China, you said North Korea-
Speaker 11: (01:04:24)
Donald Trump: (01:04:25)
Iran. When I came in Iran was a terror. We had 82 points of fighting. We had 18 points of major confliction. The first week I said, “Tell me about Iran.” “Sir, we have 18 points of confliction.” Meaning Yemen, Syria, Iraq, they’re going into Iraq all over the place. They’re a much different nation right now. I stopped that horrible deal. And they want to talk except that Kerry violated the Logan Act. He made the deal and he doesn’t want them to make a deal because… I would have made a deal, in my opinion, except that John Kerry, who made the deal originally, which was a stupid deal to make. Gave them $150 billion, gave them 1.8 billion in cash, in green. That would be more than this room, 10 times, with $100 bills. You could fill up this room 10 times with $100 bills and it’s not that small of room.
Donald Trump: (01:05:24)
And I say he violated the Logan act. I think it was a major violation. I think we would have had a deal if it wasn’t for John Kerry, but he doesn’t want to be number one, embarrassed and number two, he says, “Let’s wait till after the election.” Maybe sleepy Joe Biden’s going to win. And if sleepy Joe Biden wins, you’ll own the United States and China will own the United States. China’s paid us, you know from the Wall Street Journal, hundreds of billions of dollars. Is that right? Tariffs. And we gave a lot of that money, small percentage, but a lot of money to the farmers. And it kept the farmers going great. We’re getting tens of billions of dollars in tariffs. And by the way, for those of you that say, “Oh, we’re paying.” China devalued their currency in order to pay these. We didn’t pay. China paid. They don’t like to write that. They also added money into their system. So they paid for that.
Donald Trump: (01:06:13)
No, I think you have numerous countries waiting to see whether or not sleepy Joe wins. Because if sleepy Joe won, they own our country. They will take our country. Go back two months, we had by far, China was supposed to catch us. You know better than anybody, Wall Street Journal. For years I’ve heard by 2019 China will catch us. There’s only one problem, trump got elected in 2016. That was a big difference. And we were going leaps and bounds above China and before the problem with the plague, China was having the worst year they’ve had in 67 years. That was before the plague. Now they’re getting really hurt and so is everybody getting hurt. I don’t want them to get hurt, but they’re all getting hurt. Everybody’s getting hurt. It’s a horrible thing that’s happened. But we had the greatest economy in the world by far. China isn’t even close, go back two months, and we’re going to keep it that way.
Donald Trump: (01:07:14)
But when you mention Iran, Iran is a much different country than it was. When I first came in, Iran was going to take over the entire Middle East. Right now they just want to survive. They’re having protests every week. They’re loaded up with the plague, which I don’t want. I’ve offered to help them if they want. If they need ventilators, which they do, I would send them ventilators. We have thousands of excess ventilators coming in and here. We have a stockpile of ventilators and we’re starting to send them so that hospitals can fill up their stockpile, which they should have. New York had a chance to get 16,000 ventilators and they chose not to do it and I understand that. It’s a hard decision for a thing that may or may not happen. I fully understand that. I’m not even complaining about that.
Donald Trump: (01:07:56)
I’m only saying this, Iran was a terror when I came into office. Right now they don’t want to mess around with us. They don’t want to mess around with us. Two things. North Korea, same sanctions we’ve always had except more. We haven’t given anything. I think you’ll hopefully take that back to the Wall Street Journal because they really don’t understand it. They really don’t. And with Iran, that’s a different country right now. And they want to make a deal. The only reason that they don’t, they’re being shamed because the guy that gave them the sweetheart didn’t want to…. met with him many times. He should have never met with them and in my opinion, he’s telling them, “Don’t, wait, maybe Trump will lose,” and then you can negotiate with a Patsy with a weak guy and you’ll take over.
Donald Trump: (01:08:44)
Between you and Russia, nobody’s been tougher on Putin. He knows it better than anybody. Nobody been tougher on Putin than me. Look at the sanctions. Look at what I did with their pipeline going into Europe. Nobody even knew about it. I exposed it. Now everybody talks about it. I think it’s a terrible thing for Germany to do, but at the same time, I have a very good relationship with Putin and I was able to make a deal with Russia and Saudi Arabia and OPEC plus, they call it OPEC plus, that’s going to save us, Texas, North Dakota, Oklahoma, other States, energy States, going to save us hundreds of thousands of jobs. And in fact, your paper wrote an incredible editorial for a change, that Trump made a great deal for our country. That was a nice thing. I was shocked to see it coming out of the Wall Street Journal.
Donald Trump: (01:09:36)
Thank you all very much. We’ll see you tomorrow. Thank you. Thank you very much.
Speaker 12: (01:09:43)
How many asymptomatic people have been tested? Is it possible to get that number from you guys?