Woodward: Trump Didn't Understand Public When Downplaying COVID

Brenda Watkins
September 14, 2020

But Woodward told Today that after covering nine American presidents, the fact that Trump "possessed the specific knowledge that could have saved lives" is "one of those shocks for me".

Woodward released the new clip in an appearance on NBC Today show as his instant bestseller "Rage" hits shelves.

In his new book about the Trump presidency, title "Rage", Mr Woodward, citing sources, says the plan was first brought to the president by Health and Human Services Secretary Alexander Azar, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention chief Robert Redfield and Anthony Fauci, the top federal infectious disease expert.

And Woodward reflected on a conversation he had with Trump in August, in which, the president said nothing more could have been done to fight the coronavirus.

Woodward continued: "That's why I begin the book with that January 28 meeting because that's what the president is telling me about on February 7, but I think he was talking to me about China". But, you know, for me it works out good, ' Trump says.

'I get along very well with Erdoğan, even though you're not supposed to, because everyone says, "What a terrible guy".

Guthrie pushed Woodward, saying, "You know, understanding that hindsight is 20/20 vision and it may have taken time to put at the pieces together, one thing was abundantly clear: He tells you on February 7th this is five times more deadly than the flu and it's airborne".

Saudi Arabia reports lowest daily coronavirus cases in several months
The Health Ministry said it has the right, according to the situation, to impose certain precautionary measures. The kingdom would allow people to leave and return via land, sea and air routes, the Arab News reported.

"He didn't report it because he didn't think it was bad", Trump said.

Not even two days after, Trump said in one of his interviews with Woodward, "I wanted to always play it down".

Woodward reflected on another call from Trump, in early April, in which he hung up "feeling anxious for the country". 'This is a moment of crisis and necessity, you have a leadership responsibility. you're gonna be judged by the virus, ' " Woodward remembered.

President Donald Trump admits in a recording released Monday that he is fond of authoritarian leaders, saying the "tougher and meaner" they are, the better he gets along.

Joe Biden, the Democratic nominee for president, called the president's actions a "betrayal of the American people".

For the book, Woodward conducted 17 on-the-record interviews with Trump.

Woodward told NPR's Kelly that war between the United States and North Korea got far closer than many realized in 2017. "It got very dicey", he said.

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