Media figures railed against President Donald Trump this week for comments he made during Thursday’s White House coronavirus press briefing suggesting that disinfectants could be used to fight COVID-19 by way of “injection.” According to the Daily Caller, Trump later clarified that he was being “sarcastic” — but that’s not how Fox News anchor Bret Baier saw it.
“Well, that’s not how it looked in the briefing, and not how it came across in the briefing,” Baier told host Melissa Francis on Friday’s episode of Fox’s Outnumbered, according to the Daily Caller.
“It didn’t seem like it”
During Thursday’s presser, Trump sparked a media firestorm with his comments on disinfectants.
“I see the disinfectant, where it knocks [the coronavirus] out in one minute. One minute. And is there a way we can do something like that, by injection inside or almost a cleaning,” the president said, according to the Daily Caller. “So it would be interesting to check that.”
The president later insisted that he “was asking a question sarcastically to reporters like you just to see what would happen. I do think disinfectant on the hands could have a very good effect,” he added.
But when pressed by Francis for his opinion, Baier said he isn’t buying what Trump is selling.
“What’s problematic for this president is that sometimes he goes on these riffs,” Baier said, according to Mediaite. “Sometimes that works great on other topics, when politics comes into play, but when riffing about possible cures or treatments, it didn’t seem like it was coming off as sarcastic when he was talking and turning to Dr. [Deborah] Birx on the side.
“Obviously, this is [Trump’s] answer to all of that criticism,” Baier continued. “But the president does get himself into these issues.”
“It bothers me”
Still, according to the Daily Caller, Baier admitted that some on the left may have taken Trump’s remarks a little too literally.
“I don’t think he wants to cause any harm to anyone, obviously, and no one at home thinks, ‘Oh, you know what? I’m going to go drink bleach.’ I don’t think,” the Fox personality said. “But it is something that he clearly stepped in, here.”
For their part, members of Trump’s pandemic response team have said it’s time to move on from this trivial topic.
“I think it bothers me this is still in the news cycle,” Dr. Birx told CNN on Sunday, according to The Hill. “I think we’re missing the bigger pieces of what we need to be doing as an American people to continue to protect one another.”