President Donald Trump, on Monday, retweeted a post accusing the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) of lying about the coronavirus pandemic to influence the upcoming 2020 presidential election. Initially tweeted by Chuck Woolery, the former host of Wheel of Fortune, the tweet alleged the CDC, doctors, the media, and Democrats are using the virus to harm the president's chances at re-election.
The most outrageous lies are the ones about Covid 19. Everyone is lying. The CDC, Media, Democrats, our Doctors, not all but most ,that we are told to trust. I think it's all about the election and keeping the economy from coming back, which is about the election. I'm sick of it.— Chuck Woolery (@chuckwoolery) July 13, 2020
In a second tweet, which the president also retweeted, Woolery went on to write that "there is so much evidence, yes scientific evidence, that schools should open this fall," referring to the ongoing debate regarding whether or not the nation's school should welcome students and teachers back amid the pandemic and surging case numbers. He said such evidence is "worldwide and it's overwhelming." The former game show host did not, however, explain what "evidence" he was referring to, nor did he make clear which lies he was speaking of in his first tweet.
The posts drew plenty of pushback, with multiple people recounting their own experiences with COVID-19. In one response, somebody wrote that the virus "is NOT a lie," adding that "over 3 million cases is not about an election or the economy." Another person tweeted that their father, who was "a lifelong Republican," had "died of COVID-19 a few months ago and I'm pretty sure it had nothing to do with the election."
Woolery eventually responded to the backlash, writing that he "really stirred the pot." He went on to defend his original stance, stating that he doesn't believe Dr. Anthony Fauci, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases and the White House's top doctor on the coronavirus response, "the CDC and most of the so called experts on Covid 19 including the Media."
Woolery's message and the president's apparent agreement with them come as the United States experiences a surge in cases. The nation recently surpassed 3 million confirmed cases, with deaths surpassing 135,000 as of this posting, according to a Johns Hopkins coronavirus database.
It also comes amid multiple claims from the president that there are people and groups working against him in his reelection efforts. In May, his claims about mail-in voting and how they can lead to voter fraud were marked with a "fact check" label by Twitter. The president has also dubbed the upcoming election a "rigged 2020 election" and the "scandal of our times."