On September 9th, excerpts from Bob Woodward's new book revealed Donald Trump knew the seriousness of coronavirus in early February and actively lied about it. This, of course, has thrown Trump's White House and reelection staff into the kind of they swear they don't want to incite. So with the world literally and metaphorically on fire, let's check on the Sunday shows.

We start on CNN's "State Of The Union," where Jake Tapper nterviewed Trump's Amazon-search-certified trade adviser, Peter Navarro.

Navarro began by praising Trumpito on his second nomination for a Noble Nobel Peace Prize, and it seemed it was just gonna be the standard "Trump official lies to media" appearance. But once Tapper got to Woodward's book, he asked a simple question:


TAPPER: So, just to be clear -- I'm going to give you the mic in a sec, but just to be clear for people watching ,on February 7, he was acknowledging to Bob Woodward behind closed doors coronavirus was five times deadlier than the flu. Less than two weeks later, he was saying the exact opposite in public to Sanjay Gupta. He was misleading the American people. Why?

That's right, Tapper wasn't having it.

Navarro tried blaming Biden:

NAVARRO: He was called a xenophobe and a racist by Joe Biden...

TAPPER: No, he wasn't.

NAVARRO: ... who later had to apologize.

TAPPER: No, he wasn't. And he didn't apologize.

NAVARRO: Well, I will -- we will do the fact-check on that. I watched that.

TAPPER: I just did.

NAVARRO: All right. Well, you're wrong.

TAPPER: No.

Navarro tried to fillibuster:

TAPPER: On January 29, you were issuing a warning.

NAVARRO: Jake...

TAPPER: You were saying behind closed...

NAVARRO: This is not fair, Jake.

TAPPER: You're not answering...

NAVARRO: You're constantly interrupting me, and you're not letting me talk.

TAPPER: You're not answering my question. Why was he misleading the public?

Navarro tried to blame the "fog of war" for why they were publicly downplaying the severity while internally knowing how bad it was in the early and crucial months of the pandemic. He tried to lie his way out, but Tapper kept hammering him to answer the (Tapper almost said "damn") question of why Trump intentionally misled the people.

The exchange became heated until Tapper had enough. Navarro tried the "CNN is fake news" talking point and then Tapper kicked him out:

TAPPER: Here's the thing. Thank you, Peter Navarro. We just played tape. You didn't answer -- you didn't answer the question.

NAVARRO: I have answered -- no, you can't say that.

TAPPER: You didn't answer the question. No, you didn't.

NAVARRO: I answered the question repeatedly, Jake. You just didn't like the answer.

TAPPER: OK, Peter Navarro, thank you so much. I appreciate your time today. Thank you so much.

NAVARRO: You didn't like the answer.

TAPPER: And I would just like to remind the American people watching...

NAVARRO: I answered the question. I am reminding...

TAPPER: ... that the United States has less than five percent of the world's population, and the United States has more than 20 percent of the world's coronavirus deaths. That is a fact. It does not matter how many times he insults CNN.

But Jake Tapper wasn't the only one to push back during the Sunday shows!

Chuck Todd, in a rare moment of committing journalism, called out RNC chairwoman Ronna Romney McDaniel when she tried to say Democrats politicize mask wearing and Trump encourages masks:


McDANIEL: Well, I think 20/20 vision is, in hindsight, is always, you know, perfect, right? [...] So as the science has come forward, the president has said we should wear masks, we should do the things that the science is telling us to do --

TODD: No, he hasn't. Wait a minute. Wait, wait, wait, wait, wait.

McDANIEL: But we can do that and balance --

TODD: He has -- But, Madam Chair --

McDANIEL: But we can do that and balance opening --

TODD: -- he didn't say that.

McDANIEL: -- up our economy.

TODD: No, look --

McDANIEL: He has said that. Absolutely.

TODD: He never said, he never encouraged mask wearing. He waited months […]. He defied mask wearing. And finally, he did a tweet about wearing a mask. He refused to wear it in public. And now, you have a political divide in this country. Do you not see the direct correlation between the president not encouraging mask wearing and the fact that fewer Republicans wear masks than Independents or Democrats?

McDANIEL: I don't think this is politically dividing at all. I wear masks. My kids wear masks. My husband wears a mask. This isn't a Republican or Democrat thing, whether you wear a mask. What it is --

TODD: I'm talking about the president.

Then she blamed Joe Biden for his response to the coronavirus:

McDANIEL: I will just tell you right now if Democrats were in charge, if Joe Biden had his way, go look at his statements in January when he said the president was being xenophobic --

TODD: He's not the president.

McDANIEL: -- and hysterical for closing the borders to China --

TODD: He's not the president.

So that happened.

On "Fox News Sunday," Chris Wallace went after Trump's newest wingnut pundit-turned-adviser Steve Cortes:

Cortes on whether or not the Woodward tapes will damage Trump's chances www.youtube.com


CORTES: Chris, here's what -- here's what's important. We have to look at the timeline there. And again, this was -- this was the fog war, of biological war, and the information was shifting. The medical experts and the scientists, their views --

WALLACE: Steve, I'm going to interrupt you right there, because it wasn't the fog of war. On January 28th, the president got his presidential daily brief [...] at that point, his national security adviser [...] said, this is the biggest challenge you are going to face and your entire presidency. And the deputy national security advisor [...] immediately compared it to the Spanish flu, the deadly Spanish flu of 100 years ago. So, there was no fog of war there. [...]

CORTES: That -- no, there was tremendous fog, and let me tell you why. [...] Dr. Fauci, as late as February 29th, he appeared on national television, on the "Today Show", and said that no American should change their customs of life. OK, so, this was the fog of war. [...]

WALLACE: Steve, your explanation is somewhat different from the president, because you're saying, well, the president didn't really know, it was the fog of war. But when he has described it, he said he didn't want to panic the country, he didn't want to jump up and down and panic the country.

CORTES: Both.

WALLACE: And one of the reasons that there's a question about that is because of the fact that the president plays the panic card all the time.

There are times when watching the Sunday shows so you all don't have to is hard, but watching Trump idiots get factchecked in real time this week was a genuine joy.

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Have a week!

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Michael Mora

Pop Culture observer & Comics fan. Amateur Movie Reviewer. Political Freelance Writer @wonkette. Marine, Husband & Dad. Opinions are mine only.

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