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Defying the Odds

Defying the Odds
New book about the 2016 election.

Saturday, April 25, 2020

The President Who Needed Warning Labels

In Defying the Odds, we discuss the 2016 campaign. The 2019 update includes a chapter on the 2018 midterms. The 2020 race, the subject of our next book, is well under  way.   


The Food and Drug Administration on Friday cautioned against the use of hydroxychloroquine, a malaria drug originally approved in 1955, to treat Covid-19 outside of the hospital or in the setting of a clinical trial. The drug has been repeatedly touted by President Trump as a potential treatment.
In a drug safety communication meant for health care providers, the FDA said it is “aware of reports of serious heart rhythm problems” in patients with Covid-19 treated with hydroxychloroquine or an older drug, chloroquine. The agency said it seeks to “remind health care professionals and patients of the known risks associated with both hydroxychloroquine and chloroquine.”
Diana Bradley at PR Week:
Clorox, Lysol and even Tide Pods were trending on social media after President Donald Trump suggested people could possibly protect themselves from coronavirus by injecting disinfectant.

The social media chatter led Lysol and Dettol parent RB to quickly release a statement before anyone takes what Trump says literally.
“Due to recent speculation and social media activity, RB (the makers of Lysol and Dettol) has been asked whether internal administration of disinfectants may be appropriate for investigation or use as a treatment for coronavirus,” the company said. “As a global leader in health and hygiene products, we must be clear that under no circumstance should our disinfectant products be administered into the human body ...
Trump did not name any particular disinfectant brands, but this is what he said on Thursday night during the White House coronavirus press briefing: "I see the disinfectant that knocks [coronavirus] out in a minute, one minute. And is there a way we can do something like that by injection inside or almost a cleaning? As you see, it gets in the lungs, it does a tremendous number on the lungs, so it would be interesting to check that."
Food and Drug Administration chief Dr. Stephen Hahn is also getting word out to protect consumers.
He told CNN's Anderson Cooper, "I certainly wouldn't recommend the internal ingestion of a disinfectant."
At a bill signing, Trump claimed that his remark was a sarcastic comment that he directed at a reporter -- even though he tone was serious.  (He used the same dodge for his "Russia, if you're listening" comment in 2016.)
Q    But just to clarify — just to clarify that, sir: Are you — are you encouraging Amer- — you’re not encouraging Americans to ingest —
THE PRESIDENT:  No, of course — no.  Of course.
Q    — disinfectant?
THE PRESIDENT:  That was — interior wise, it’s said sarcastically.  It was — it was put in the form of a question to a group of extraordinarily hostile people, namely the fake news media.
Okay.  So —
Q    Some doctors felt they needed to clarify that after your comments.
THE PRESIDENT:  Well, of course.  All they had to do was see it was — just, you know, the way it was asked.  I was — I was looking at you.
Q    No, you weren’t, sir.  I wasn’t there yesterday.  (Laughter.)
THE PRESIDENT:  I know.  I know.
Q    You were looking at Dr. Birx.
THE PRESIDENT:  What’s that?
Q    You were looking at Dr. Birx.
THE PRESIDENT:  I was looking at Bill.  I was looking at the doctor.  I was looking at some of the reporters.  I don’t know if you were there.  Were you there?  I don’t think you were there.
Q    I was there, and I watched you ask her.
THE PRESIDENT:  No, not you.  Not you.  Not you.  You were there.  You — if you’re there, I never forget.  You were —
Q    I wasn’t there yesterday, sir.
THE PRESIDENT:  You were not?
Q    No, sir.
THE PRESIDENT:  Yeah, I didn’t think you were there.
Okay.
Q    Just, Mr. President — Mr. President, I know that you continue to say — you’re obviously —
THE PRESIDENT:  Okay, hold it one second.
Q    Yeah.
THE PRESIDENT:  Any other questions from any other people?
Okay, thank you very much, everybody.  Thank you.
END