News and Commentary

Dan Crenshaw Dismantles WaPo Writer’s Attempt To ‘Rewrite History’ On Trump’s Coronavirus Response

   DailyWire.com
U.S. Rep. Dan Crenshaw (R-TX) speaks on “The Fate of Our Culture and Our Nation Hangs in the Balance” during the CPAC Direct Action Training at the annual Conservative Political Action Conference at Gaylord National Resort & Convention Center February 26, 2020 in National Harbor, Maryland. U.S. President Donald Trump is expected to address the annual event on February 29th. (Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images)
Alex Wong/Getty Images

An op-ed for The Washington Post heaping most of the blame on President Trump for the massive “human and material” toll of the COVID-19 pandemic prompted Texas Republican Rep. Dan Crenshaw to issue a series of social media posts dismantling the columnist’s attempt to “rewrite history.”

“[T]he Trump toll, when we are done, will likely include tens of thousands of unnecessary deaths, massive unemployment, trillions of dollars more in debt and trillions of dollars in lost wealth not to mention emotional hardship and educational disruption,” tweeted Washington Post columnist Jennifer Rubin in a tweet promoting her latest op-ed.

In the piece, titled “Trump’s Inaction Has A Staggering Toll,” Rubin blames “Trump’s utter incompetence” for the massive damage both in terms of human lives and the economy. Trump, she writes, is guilty of “delinquency in acting to protect Americans against the pandemic” and “ongoing failure to ramp up testing, which would allow economic reengagement.” She goes on to accuse Trump of not shutting down the country fast enough “when the WHO sounded its alarm” and failing to “ramp up testing at a massive scale” and “prepar[ing] our health-care system” to better handle the pandemic.

Crenshaw responded in a thread that begins emphatically: “STOP. REWRITING. HISTORY.”

“Instead of attempting to spin the public into a hateful, frightened frenzy, let’s try reporting some facts with the correct context,” he wrote. Crenshaw then offered a version of what he suggested would be a more fair and accurate summary of what actually took place over the last few months (formatting adjusted, posts below):

On March 3rd, the day after you claim Trump should have shut our economy down, this is how the WHO downplayed the virus:  “COVID-19 spreads less efficiently than flu, transmission does not appear to be driven by people who are not sick”

Would the America public really have accepted millions of jobs destroyed for a virus that had infected just 102 people by March 2? Especially considering Italy would not lock down until March 10th, Spain on March 14th, and the UK on March 23? A bit of context is in order here.

I want to respond to this particular comment: “Because we did not act earlier to ramp up testing at a massive scale and prepare our health-care system, social distancing — shutting down most of the economy — was required.”

Not sure where the magic COVID-19 testing switch is. The truth is that long-standing regulations – in place for decades – prevented us from doing so. [links to PolitiFact report finding FDA regulations did slow testing]

Additionally, you falsely state that social distancing should have been a “last resort.” But this has no basis in fact. Experts have long said flattening the curve via social distancing is the only way to prevent the initial case spike that would overwhelm hospitals.

First, you argue that we should have shut down the economy weeks before we did. Then, you argue that the shut down, resulting job loss, and economic devastation are his fault too. Which is it? You can’t have it both ways.

Your analysis makes it seem like our government deliberately decided not to buy more PPE. The truth is there was a global production shortage when China began stopping exports, and demand soared. This is still happening.

While you argue that Trump ignored early warning signs, you ignore the headlines that ran on the pages of your paper in January and February. Here are a couple: [includes screenshots from The Washington Post]

When it’s all said and done, this bad-faith analysis isn’t fact-based and lacks important context. Hating Trump is not an excuse for lazy argumentation and emotional reasoning. Now, more than ever, we need critical thinking and productive deliberation.