Bill O’Reilly: Democrats Impeaching Trump Is Why Your Children Will Grow Up In A Plastic Bubble
Former Fox News lech Bill O'Reilly has some thoughts about the coronavirus, and why Donald Trump didn't effectively react to looming crisis: Democrats are to blame for not leaving him alone while he shredded the Constitution.
The impeachment fraud diverted our attention away from the virus. That is the truth.— Bill O'Reilly (@Bill O'Reilly)1584635206.0
We all miss impeachment. It was a simpler time when we thought we'd always be able to leave the house. How did O'Reilly deduce that Trump's impeachment is why the coronavirus caught us with our pants down? (Now that we're in isolation it no longer matters if we're wearing pants or not.) O'Reilly combed that barren desert he calls a soul for clues and filled us in on his website.
O'REILLY: I've been soul searching myself. Did I do a good enough job in the beginning of the coronavirus? Was I on it the way I should have been? I don't know. Here's what I said on January 22, very early on ...
He cuts to a clip from that date. What he said wasn't just dumb in hindsight. It's dumb in all points of time.
O'REILLY: China. Coronavirus. It's really a super flu. It gets into your lungs. It's like pneumonia. You can't breathe. You die. So far, 440 cases. Most of them in China. Nine dead. The town of Wuhan has been isolated, shut down. You can't get in. It's like "The Andromeda Strain." That is very chilling to everybody on the planet, this pan epidemic thing that we've seen in the movies, zombie people and all that.
It seems like O'Reilly's entire understanding of viral outbreaks comes from sci-fi movies.
O'REILLY: One case in the USA, outside of Seattle. And if you fly from China to the USA, you are being scrutinized in the airports. But it takes about a week for this disease to manifest itself so pretty frightening situation.
He was right about the severity of the issue but he didn't exactly sound the alarms, which he — and every other conservative pundit — would've done if Barack Obama or Hillary Clinton were president. Having a failed businessman, reality TV show host, and overall buffoon in charge lulled him into a false sense of security.
O'Reilly observed that the day after his video, January 23, China imposed a lockdown on Wuhan. What happened on January 24? The House impeachment arguments started (and our Tabs were so much happier!).
O'REILLY: Impeachment diverted attention of President Trump away from the virus and of the American people. There's no question about it.
Trump dismissed the coronavirus threat in a January 22 interview on CNBC's “Squawk Box." Host Joe Kernan asked Trump if he believed the coronavirus could become a pandemic and presumably after someone told him what a “pandemic" was, Trump said, “No. not at all."
TRUMP: It's going to be just fine. We have it totally under control.
The scary thing is it's possible Trump was both dumb and lazy enough to believe this. Think about it. We've discussed whether Trump would try to “wag the dog" so he could bury impeachment as a major story. Sounding the alarm about the coronavirus might've helped. He could've made himself a “wartime" president earlier.
O'REILLY: Now, I'll give you the facts: On January 30, the World Health Organization declared the virus a global health emergency. January 30. The next day, President Trump stopped the flights from China. On February 3, Congressman Schiff delivered his closing arguments in the Senate impeachment trial. So, you can see: It's concurrent.
It's reasonable to expect the president of the United States to address more than one serious issue at a time. They don't just politely wait their turn to attack like a group of assassins in an action movie.
O'REILLY: What do you think President Trump's doing? He knows about the World Health Organization. But his focus has to be on him being impeached! So, it's not an excuse. It's a fact.
What's also a fact is that Trump was impeached on December 18. China alerted the WHO of “several cases of unusual pneumonia" on December 31. Not the best way to ring in the New Year. If Trump couldn't chew gum and skate on impeachment charges at the same time, then he should've resigned. This is what noted statesman Richard Nixon said when he resigned from office.
NIXON: I have never been a quitter. To leave office before my term is completed is abhorrent to every instinct in my body. But as President, I must put the interest of America first. America needs a full-time President and a full-time Congress, particularly at this time with problems we face at home and abroad.
It's Trump's fault that he chose to prioritize his own re-election over the law. It's Trump's fault that he got impeached. And it's Trump's fault that our economy is cratering and Americans are trapped at home with their families. Those are the facts, and we're not interested in excuses.
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Stephen Robinson is a writer and social kibbitzer based in Portland, Oregon. He writes reviews for the A.V. Club and make believe for Cafe Nordo, an immersive theatre space in Seattle. He's also on the board of the Portland Playhouse theatre. His son describes him as a “play typer guy."