Wednesday night, President Donald Trump delivered a speech addressing ongoing concerns about coronavirus, just hours after it was classified as a global pandemic by the World Health Organization. However, the address, which was carried live on C-SPAN, also included a few seconds of video both before and after the speech. It didn't go unnoticed by Stephen Colbert, who took the president to task for it on Wednesday night's installment of The Late Show with Stephen Colbert.
"Trump's on-camera remarks were a total disaster," Colbert began. "But if its any consolation, so were his off-camera remarks." The host then cut to a segment of Trump prior to the speech, sitting at his desk, and asking aides who were out-of-frame whether or not he should keep his binder on his desk.
"But the fun didn't stop there, because after he finished, the camera's kept rolling," Colbert continued, which then showed Trump immediately after the speech, when he let out a seemingly dismissive "OK..." Perhaps the strangest aspect was that this was done during The Late Show's first-ever taping done without an audience, which was also done to help slow the spread of coronavirus.
On Friday, Trump declared a national emergency over coronavirus in a speech from the White House Rose Garden, although that was also heavily scrutinized, largely due to the confusing presence of a number of CEOs. Then on Monday, the president gave a press conference regarding coronavirus, where he told reporters that the current recommendation of social distancing could remain into effect well into the summer.
"It's important for the young and healthy people to understand that while they may experience mild symptoms. They can easily spread this virus and they will spread it indeed, putting countless others in harm's way," Trump said. He went on to add that he'd spoken to his son, Barron, about the issue.
"I've spoken, actually, with my son," Trump said. "He says, 'How bad is this?' It's bad. It's bad. But we're going to be hopefully a best-case, not a worst-case." He added that he referred to coronavirus as an "invisible enemy."
Given the shortages many are seeing in grocery stores across the U.S., particularly with toilet paper, the president also said on Monday that he had spoken to the American Grocers and Supply Chain Executives about meeting nationwide demands amidst this health crisis.