White House Coronavirus Press Briefing (Probably)

The podium buzzes with people. Dr. Fauci and Dr. Birx shuffle about, while Vice President Pence touches his nose and mouth, before shaking hands with four people in flight suits. We wait for President Trump to take the podium.

President Trump enters from the left, shaking hands with everyone on stage. He begins reading prepared notes.

Trump: Good afternoon, and thank you for being here. Our response to the coronavirus has been led by the Centers For Disease Control, and many great doctors and nurses, and I want to thank the many healthcare workers, who are like soldiers in a war, helping Americans. We are fighting and winning the battle by social distancing, washing hands, and —

(A timer in President Trump’s brain clicks over to 20 seconds, and a small bird begins flying around the inside of his cranium. His attention span has officially hit zero, and the prepared portion of the briefing ends. He meanders off-script and begins speaking from the auctioneer patter in his head.)

Trump (continuing): We’ve been saying, and I’ve been hearing from doctors, which I’m not a doctor, but my uncle was one of the best doctors, he went to MIT, a doctor school, one of the finest for medicine, and things like medicine, the hydroxychloroquine is treating these patients. It’s truly fantastic, and we’re seeing good things, many good things. People said it won’t work, but you know we tried it, and I’ve been thinking I might try, because it is working. We’re making it work, even though the Democrats want to use this to smear my election.

(Trump pauses, and rustles some papers in front of him, before lifting a piece of paper, displaying a picture of Africa.)

Trump: This is is a country called Africa, and I just got off the phone with the President of South Africa. It was a tremendous phone call. Africa, as you know, it’s a huge country, with many other smaller countries, and we’re going to help them, you know, because this coronavirus — I think it’s worldwide, or as some people say, global.

I’d like to bring up Dr. Fauci, who can talk more about how we can help the Africans, and African Americans, who have better job numbers now than ever before in history. You wanna tell them about how many jobs I made for Africans, Dr. Fauci?

(Dr. Fauci takes the podium.)

Dr. Fauci: For the past five days, I have been coordinating with the Director of the CDC to work towards a containment solution that involves the United States, Europe, Asia, Africa, Australia, and the rest of the world. We need to understand that this is a global problem, and a spread anywhere, is a spread everywhere.

Mitigation is key. Measurement is key. We are going to work on testing here, and in Europe, and in South America, identifying hot spots, and working with local, state, and any other municipalities to limit the spread. Our goal, until we get a vaccine, it’s to flatten the curve.

(Trump edges Dr. Fauci away from the podium, and continues speaking.)

Trump: As Dr. Fauci was saying, we are weeks, maybe even days away from a vaccine. I have been hearing that a lot, from many people.

(Dr. Fauci buries his face in his hands.)

Trump: What is a vaccine anyway? I think we can shake up some of this virus with a flu vaccine, in a glass tube, some people call them test tubes. You just mix the two vaccines together, you shake them like this, and it’s a miracle, it’s a new vaccine, but the FDA and the scientists, they are working with the Democrats, and we’re hearing they want to make this about ventilators. I’ve tried a ventilator. It’s a fan basically, it’s a vacuum but reverse. How hard can a vacuum be? You’re making this very hard, and it’s easy. It’s very easy.

(An assistant puts up a board behind Trump, that reads “How To Reverse a Vacuum Cleaner To Inflate”.)

Trump: A ventilator as doctors call them, they’re a backwards vacuum. We need everyone to see, and this is how it works, if you can’t go to a hospital, you can make this, and it’s basically just two tubes. I hear you can do this with a screwdriver, and it’s just amazing. You get air blowing, instead of sucking, and it’s blowing all air, that’s how your lungs work, if you need air, you blow it in.

The FDA is saying to do this, and take hydroxychloroquine, and you’ll live. People are doing this, and they are living, and you don’t even need to go, because hospitals are getting busier, but if you have a vacuum, you do this, it’s into your mouth, and it’s air. That’s what lungs do. They make you have air.

Alright, now I’ll take some questions, how about One America, always with good questions, I like you a lot.

Chanel Rion (OANN): Hello President Trump. With your poll numbers at an all time high, and the economy rebounding due to your leadership, how much would you say Americans love you?

Trump: Great question, I always love your questions. You’re right, I’m polling higher than ever, because I’m making this better. The Democrats want to steal another election, but they can’t because I’m winning, and they hate to win. They lose. That’s what they are. Losers. Chuck Schumer, today, he murdered a small Christian baby, and no one is even talking about it. He stomped a little baby that loved Jesus, and the lying news media won’t tell you about that, but I will. He killed a baby and now Nancy Pelosi is going to eat the baby. It’s so sad. They’re pathetic.

Chanel Rion (OANN): And a follow up question. People are saying you’re handling this better than Hillary Clinton would have handled it. How do you respond to such criticism?

Trump: Hillary Clinton, we should lock her up. I’ve heard, and I’m not a doctor, but I have heard she worked with China to make the virus. Why aren’t we looking into that? We have so many people, smart doctors, and they’re saying, “This could have only been her.” A big strong man, a general, he came up to me, crying. He had tears in his eyes, and he said, “You make sure Hillary pays for this.” And I will. We’re going to look into it, and when we do, we’re going to see she did it.

Next question.

Yamiche Alcindor (PBS Newshour): Mr. President, multiple governors have expressed concern about how multiple states bidding has driven up the cost of PPE and other critical medical supplies. Are you going to enforce a price-cap for medical products?

Trump: You know, I don’t even like your question. I think it’s a bad question, and it’s, I’m saying it’s not because you’re black, but you probably are, and I’m thinking you just want black Americans to hate me. But I’m huge with the blacks, and the Latinos, and they have record jobs–

Yamiche Alcindor (PBS Newshour): Please answer my question, I asked about medical supplies–

Trump: It was a bad question. You’re fake news. I’m answering good questions. In fact, we need to get Dr. Birx up here. We made a chart, a way you can know what a good question is. I need good questions. Not bad questions.

(Dr. Birx takes the stage, holds up a chart, and begins explaining it.)

Dr. Birx: Many of you seems to need guidance about what to do. During these press briefings, we need to avoid giving out any information. The purpose of a briefing like this is to make President Trump seem competent. A good example would be to ask a question that allows President Trump to easily blame China, or — even better, Muslim people. Many of you may be thinking, “What did Muslim people do?” That’s a great question, and that’s why we need to let President Trump answer it. President Trump, what are we doing to prevent Muslims from hurting America?

(Trump takes the stand again.)

Trump: Muslims, they have been doing face covering, they call them hibajis. It’s a face and head covering. I don’t blame Muslims, but many people are, and I think we can look into it. Next question.

Jonathan Karl (ABC): Hospitals in New York, Washington, Louisiana, and now Atlanta have reported critical shortages in PPE. When will more arrive?

Trump: They are stealing face masks, the protection they steal. These doctors and nurses, they are stealing it, taking it home, sometimes selling it. I keep saying we need to spray it with Lysol or Windex. It cleans them, and then you flip it inside out, and it, you can use it, more than once, maybe twice, I have heard up to 10 times.

I’m done with questions. If you want to watch, I’ll be on TV, on Sean Hannity. He’s great, and he asks good questions, unlike you fake news. You just do this to make me look bad. You’re all Democrats. I’m just doing this to help you, which need more ratings, better than The Bachelor.

(Trump exits.)