Mar 8, 2020 - Politics & Policy

Trump Jr. defends saying Democrats want millions to die from coronavirus

Donald Trump Jr. said he's "entitled to speak with hyperbole" when questioned in an interview with "Axios on HBO" about his statement suggesting Democrats want millions to die from the coronavirus.

Between the lines: Trump Jr. told Fox News in late February that "for Democrats to try to take a pandemic and seemingly hope that it comes here and kills millions of people so that they could end Donald Trump's streak of winning is a new level of sickness."

  • "I don't know if this is coronavirus or Trump Derangement Syndrome, but these people are infected badly," Trump told Fox News.

In the "Axios on HBO" interview, Trump clarified that he doesn't actually think that Democrats want millions to die, but noted: "I don't know that they want millions of people, but you could see them."

  • "There was nothing that Trump could do that could turn his response to coronavirus into, hey, he did a good job."

The big picture: There are more than 106,000 coronavirus cases in 100 countries and territories and the global death toll has risen to almost 3,600.

  • The Trump administration's response to the novel coronavirus is being spearheaded by Vice President Mike Pence, in coordination with the Centers for Disease Control and the National Institutes of Health.
  • Officials have predicted the continued spread of the virus throughout the U.S., with the likelihood of significantly more confirmed cases as testing improves.
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