On Thursday, a covid-19 riddled President Trump delivered a desperate message to the nation’s seniors, a demographic he’s losing in droves. It all took place on the White House lawn—or, perhaps, a green screen made to look like the White House lawn—and was remarkably slapdash, even for him:
“So, to my favorite people in the world: The seniors! I’m a senior. I know you don’t know that. Nobody knows that. Maybe you don’t have to tell them, but I’m a senior. We are making tremendous progress for this horrible disease that was sent over by China. China will pay a big price for what they did for the world, and us. We have medicines right now—and I call them a cure—I went to the hospital a week ago, I was very sick, and I took this medicine and it was incredible, it was incredible. I could have walked out the following day. Sooner! it was incredible, the impact it had. And we’re going to make that, and others that are similar to it, almost identical, we’re going to make them available, immediately!”
There is no known cure for covid-19. Trump is likely referring to the experimental Regeneron antibody cocktail he received during his stay at Walter Reed National Military Health Center, as well as the antiviral drug Remdesivir. This hyperbolic declaration from the president is misleading and could even impact the effectiveness of ongoing clinical trials. But realism left the building long ago, and the opportunity to be braggadocious was far too tempting for Trump to pass up
“[FDA proceedings] that would take, two, three, four years are taking a matter of weeks or even sooner than that,” Trump added. “And that’s because of me.”
His pitch to seniors didn’t stop there, and somehow got worse:
You’re not vulnerable, but they like to say ‘the vulnerable,’” Trump rambled. “But you’re the least vulnerable. But for this one thing, you are vulnerable. So am I.”
Given that Trump won seniors handily during his 2016 run, it’s obvious that his campaign is in panic mode. How Trump delivering a video message with the energy of a sleazy salesman helps him at all is anybody’s guess. Perhaps he is hoping to bank on their fond recollections of bizarre, late-night infomercials. Before you know it, he’ll pivot to selling early bird vouchers to Golden Corral.