Trump on 155,000 coronavirus deaths: 'It is what it is'


Trump sought to downplay his failure to contain the coronavirus in an interview with Axios' Jonathan Swan.

Donald Trump brushed aside the massive death toll from the coronavirus in the United States, using data selectively to make his failure to contain the virus look better during an interview with Axios' Jonathan Swan that aired Monday night on HBO.

"They are dying, that's true. And you have — it is what it is" Trump told Swan, who was pushing back on Trump's assertion that the virus is "under control" when it most definitely is not. "But that doesn't mean we aren't doing everything we can. It's under control as much as you can control it. This is a horrible plague."

More than 4.7 million people have contracted the virus and 155,935 people have died from it in the United States.

Swan pointed out to Trump that other countries — such as South Korea — were able to contain the virus and mitigate deaths. But Trump, without any evidence, claimed South Korea was faking their data that only 301 people out of the country's 51 million population died of the virus.

The United States, on the other hand, has the most deaths from the virus in the world, according to data from the World Health Organization.

The coronavirus was not the only topic Swan pressed Trump about.

Swan asked Trump how "history will remember John Lewis" — the civil rights icon whose nonviolent protest helped launch the Voting Rights Act of 1965.

"I don't know. I really don't know," Trump said of Lewis' legacy. "I don't know John Lewis. He chose not to come to my inauguration."

Trump also refused to say if Lewis was "impressive."

"I find many people impressive. I find many people not impressive," Trump said, going on to say that he had done "more for Black Americans" than Lewis — who was nearly beaten to death as he fought for equal rights for Black Americans.

Published with permission of The American Independent Foundation.