White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows is being questioned on President Donald Trump’s messaging amid the coronavirus pandemic.
As Meadows was asked about the pandemic, CBS’ John Dickerson noted that the president “seems to be rowing in the opposite direction of his health experts,” specifically noting “contradicting” messages Trump has made on Twitter in contrast to Dr. Anthony Fauci.
“Why is his message so different than what his public health officials [are saying]?” Dickerson asked during Sunday’s “Face the Nation” interview. “Shouldn’t they be in line?”
However, Meadows pushed back, saying that Trump’s messages are not different than public health officials. He went on in his defense to note the daily press briefings on the coronavirus response returning.
When Meadows turned to testing, Dickerson interjected, adding, “Testing is important. Testing has to take place.”
Dickerson continued, “The president being in a debate with Dr. Fauci doesn’t get people focused on what you listen to all of his public health experts saying on all the other channels. The president’s got his channel. On the other channels you have health officials telling people wear masks.”
The White House chief of staff then added, “The facts are this, as we continue to test, we continue to look at areas that we need to be concerned about. Nursing homes, long term care, those that have three comorbidities.”
“We’re finding more and more asymptomatic people. But the real result is we’re not going to test our way out of this,” Meadows added. “We’ve got to get a therapeutic, we’ve got to make sure that we have a treatment and we’re making great progress.”
Watch Meadows’ interview below:
Dickerson did not back down as he continued to press Meadows, saying, “There is no better megaphone in the country than the president,” adding, “The things he’s concerned about don’t seem to be the same things his public health officials are concerned about.”
Meadows, however, declared that he does not “agree with your characterization there.”
Recently, Trump sparked controversy when he promoted a video with a false claim about a “cure” for COVID-19 and that suggested, “You don’t need a mask.” The president also reposted a tweet that accused Fauci of misleading the American public.
Fauci, however, brushed it off, previously saying during a “Good Morning America” interview, “I don’t know how to address that. I’m just going to certainly continue doing my job.”