The “fat-shaming” feud between President Trump and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) added yet another public dig, this time from Pelosi and featuring the repeating of a false coronavirus-themed accusation against the president.
This new round of public sparring between the president and the speaker started with Pelosi’s comment on Trump disclosing to reporters on Monday that he is taking the anti-malarial drug hydroxychloroquine as a preventive measure amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
“I’m taking it, hydroxychloroquine,” Trump said during a roundtable with restaurant industry leaders at the White House on Monday. “I think it’s good,” he said of the drug, which he has been taking for about two weeks now. “I’ve heard a lot good stories. And if it’s not good, I’ll tell you right [now], I’m not going to get hurt by it.”
Though Trump is taking the medicine under the supervision of his doctor, Pelosi said that she thinks it’s “not a good idea,” specifically citing Trump’s weight. “As far as the president is concerned, he’s our president and I would rather he not be taking something that has not been approved by the scientists, especially in his age group and in his, shall we say, weight group, morbidly obese, they say,” the Democrat said in an interview with CNN’s Anderson Cooper Monday. “So I think it’s not a good idea.”
Pelosi is 80 & she has the maturity level of a 5 year old.
Pelosi: "I would rather he not be taking something that has not been approved by the scientists, especially in his age group & in his, shall we say, weight group — morbidly obese"
0 push back from CNN's Anderson Cooper. pic.twitter.com/H7iLJKKxE5
— Steve Guest (@SteveGuest) May 19, 2020
Trump was asked about Pelosi’s “morbidly obese” comment on Tuesday, initially dismissing it before unloading on the “sick woman.”
“I don’t respond to her, I think she’s a waste of time,” Trump said. But while discussing the Democrats’ political games later, Trump said, “These people are sick. Pelosi is a sick woman, she’s got a lot of problems, a lot of mental problems. We’re dealing with people that have to get their act together for the good of the country.”
Reporter asks about Speaker Pelosi's "morbidly obese" comment.
President Trump: "I don't respond to her. I think she's a waste of time…Pelosi is a sick woman. She's got a lot of problems a lot of mental problems."
— CSPAN (@cspan) May 19, 2020
Pelosi has since responded by slamming Trump for being “so sensitive” about his weight and falsely claiming that he told people to “put Lysol into their lungs,” an oft-repeated mischaracterization of Trump’s question about how disinfectants might be used to kill the virus.
“I didn’t know that he would be so sensitive. He’s always talking about other people’s … weight, their pounds,” Pelosi said in an interview with MSNBC’s Nicolle Wallace on Tuesday.
She then dropped a weight pun before repeating the Lysol claim.
“I think he should recognize that his words weigh a ton,” said Pelosi. “Instead of telling people to put Lysol into their lungs or taking a medication that has not been approved except under certain circumstances, he should be saying what your previous guest mentioned, things that would help people.”
Pelosi’s Lysol comment was a reference to a famous moment from a White House Coronavirus Task Force briefing in which Trump asked DHS Under Secretary for Science and Technology Bill Bryan about his updates on various “striking” observations about what impacts the virus.
“We’ve tested bleach, we’ve tested isopropyl alcohol on the virus, specifically in saliva or in respiratory fluids, and I can tell you that bleach will kill the virus in five minutes,” Bryan explained at the briefing. “Isopropyl alcohol will kill the virus in 30 seconds, and that’s with no manipulation, no rubbing. Just bring it on and leaving it go. You rub it and it goes away even faster. We’re also looking at other disinfectants, specifically looking at the COVID-19 virus in saliva.”
In response, Trump, said, “I see the disinfectant, where it knocks it out in a minute, one minute. And is there a way we can do something like that by injection inside or almost a cleaning? Because you see it gets in the lungs and it does a tremendous number on the lungs, so it’d be interesting to check that, so that you’re going to have to use medical doctors with, but it sounds interesting to me.”
That comment was then characterized by Trump’s critics as the president recommending that people “drink Lysol,” a claim so widely spread that the makers of Lysol felt compelled to issue a statement warning against “improper use of disinfectants.”
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