Donald Trump has lied about every aspect of the COVID-19 pandemic, starting with his declaration that it was a politically inspired hoax.

The 2011 Steven Soderbergh movie “Contagion” includes a character who touts a homeopathic remedy for a deadly epidemic called Forsythia. He stages his illness and pretends to recover from the disease, which convinces the public for being a cure. He makes millions from the bogus claim, at the expense of countless thousands who died from the misinformation and panic to obtain Forsythia.

Those people who have blindly defended Trump’s ongoing mismanagement of the national crisis are also the most at risk of suffering from the spiraling health and economic disaster. They are buying his “Forsythia” propaganda, while suffering job losses and unpaid medical expenses.

“They tried the impeachment hoax. That was on a perfect conversation. They tried anything. They tried it over and over. They’d been doing it since you got in. It’s all turning. They lost. It’s all turning. Think of it. Think of it. And this is their new hoax,” said Trump.

Public Citizen, a leading progressive advocacy group, demanded on March 13 that President Donald Trump resign immediately, declaring that his “intolerable failures of leadership” in the midst of the coronavirus pandemic have “endangered the lives of all Americans.”

In a statement, Public Citizen president Robert Weissman pointed to Trump’s repeated lies about the outbreak and refusal to “make science-based recommendations (e.g., older people should avoid cruise ships and plane travel)” as reasons for the president to step down. Weissman also slammed Trump’s hesitancy to declare a public health emergency over COVID-19 “out of fear about the impact on the stock market.”

President Donald Trump is a clear and present danger to the nation’s public health, and he should resign immediately.

In a time when protecting the nation’s public health demands clear, truthful, and compassionate leadership, Trump has offered exactly the opposite.

He has dissembled about the seriousness of the coronavirus epidemic, either because he refuses to accept the truth or fears the impact on his political fortunes, or both.

He has refused to make science-based recommendations (e.g., older people should avoid cruise ships and plane travel) or to declare a public health emergency out of fear about the impact on the stock market. He has misstated his administration’s own policies.

He has presided over an administration that has inexplicably failed to deliver vitally needed coronavirus tests to healthcare providers around the country and then repeatedly lied to or misled the American public about remedying the problem. Instead of taking responsibility for the problem and fixing it, Trump has bizarrely blamed it on his predecessor, Barack Obama.

He has attacked his political rivals rather than seek to bring the country together.

These failings have nothing to do with political ideology or legitimate areas of policy disagreement. They are intolerable failures of leadership in a time of national crisis that have endangered the lives of all Americans. Trump should step down immediately.

“We’re in great shape,” Trump told reporters on March 12 as the number of coronavirus cases in the U.S. surpassed 1,600 and as frontline workers continued to lament the lack of available testing equipment.

The president has repeatedly downplayed the severity of the pandemic and attempted to shift blame to his predecessor for the White House’s botched response. Trump has also repeatedly relayed false information to the public about his administration’s policy decisions, sparking mass confusion and fears of a global market crash.

“Trump did not push to do aggressive additional testing in recent weeks, partly because more testing might have led to more cases being discovered of coronavirus outbreak, and the president had made clear—the lower the numbers on coronavirus, the better for the president, the better for his potential reelection this fall,” said political reporter Dan Diamond.

The Milwaukee Independent began reporting on what was then referred to as the mysterious “Wuhan Virus” in January 2020. Other local media did not picked-up on the story until many weeks later. Our early features focused on the economic impact, social issues, and health concerns long before other Milwaukee news organizations even mentioned the coronavirus. Over the following year, we have published hundreds of articles about the pandemic and how it has affected the lives of Milwaukee residents. This extensive body of work can be found on our COVID-19 Special Report page, a chronological index of links by month. Our editorial voice remains dedicated to informing the public about this health crisis for as long as it persists.
For medical resources, please visit the CDC’s COVID-19 page or the Wisconsin Department of Health Services. All editorial content published by Milwaukee Independent can be found at With a mission of transformative journalism, our staff is free from commercial bias and are not influenced by corporate interests, political affiliations, or a public preferences that rewards clicks with revenue. As an influential publication that provides Milwaukee with quality journalism, our award-winning photojournalism and features have helped to achieve a range of positive social impact that enriches our community. Please join our effort by entrusting us with your contribution. Your Support Matters - Donate Now