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Trump tells combative CBS reporter to ‘relax’ and keep her voice down as media hostilities continue

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It was clear from the start that CBS White House reporter Weijia Jiang was on a mission when she was called on by President Donald Trump during Sunday’s White House coronavirus briefing.

It was equally clear that the president has seen this dance more than once and was in no mood for more biased media antics.

Loud, aggressive and even rude at times, Jiang peppered Trump with questions in furtherance of the established media narrative that the president was ill-prepared to respond to COVID-19 and that this led to the virus spreading wider and killing more Americans.

 

“I have a question about something you said on Thursday, which is that you were angry because ‘information about the virus should have been told to us earlier and alot sooner. People knew it was happening and people did not want to talk about it,’ Jiang began. “Many Americans are saying the exact same thing about you, that you should have warned them the virus was spreading like wildfire through the month of February instead of holding rallies with thousands of people. Why did you wait so long to warn them?”

Somehow, we just know that the CBS reporter wouldn’t hit Speaker Nancy Pelosi with such a loaded question after the Democrat was urging tourists in late February to visit China Town.

When Trump pointed to his decision on January 31 to ban travel from China, Jiang interrupted him to complain that he didn’t ban American citizens from returning to their own country — some returning citizens were potentially at risk of a mandatory quarantine.

Jiang, who was born in China and grew up in West Virginia, was so worked up in her effort to try to score points that Trump had to caution her to relax.

“Nice and easy,” he said. “Nice and easy. Just relax.”

But the CBS reporter was having none of it, as Jiang dared to lecture the president of the United States on what he “should” have been doing.

“…You should have warned people it was spreading so quickly. And by the way, when you issued the ban, the virus was already here,” she said.

Again, her agenda could not have been more clear if she was holding a sign that read: “Orange man bad. Biden 2020.”

As expected, when Trump asked Jiang how many cases of COVID-19 did the U.S. have when he issued the ban, she could not answer the question. He pressed, but she could not provide the answer — the first case of coronavirus was announced on Jan. 20.

After the combative reporter established that Trump knew at some point that this was going to be a pandemic — even as he continued to press on his question — she twisted his position to ask, “So do you acknowledge that you didn’t think it was going to spread?”

“Keep your voice down, please. Keep your voice down,” the president would ask again.

He asked her how many people had died in the U.S. when he decided to close down the country, eventually answering the question for her, stating that to the best of his knowledge, there had been no deaths.

The exchange only warmed Trump up for another reporter looking for his “gotcha” moment.

CNN reporter Jeremy Diamond tried to establish that Trump was “duped” by Chinese President Xi Jinping after praising the communist leader, but the president swatted him away with little effort — he’s had plenty of practice with the network’s primadonna reporter Jim Acosta.

 

“You people are so pathetic at CNN,” Trump said at one point.

He noted that when Pelosi “was having parties in San Francisco” and urging people to ‘go to Chinatown,’ he had already closed up the country.

“That’s why your ratings are so bad because you’re pathetic,” Trump told the reporter. “Your ratings are terrible, you gotta get back to real news.”

Trump did not pull any punches Sunday when asked why Sen. Mitt Romney, R-Utah, was the only senator not on an announced task force to reopen the country.

“Does that show you’re still holding a grudge against him?” the reporter asked.

“Yeah,” the president responded. “No, I’m not a fan of Mitt Romney.”

When asked about his record as a governor, Trump reiterated, “I’m not a fan of Mitt Romney. I don’t really want his advice.”

 

Tom Tillison

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