President Donald Tump's Monday press briefing on the coronavirus pandemic focused on the private sector's response, with several CEOs speaking at the White House. One was MyPillow founder Mike Lindell, a big Trump supporter who said Monday that "God gave us grace" when Trump was elected president. When Trump introduced Lindell, CNN cut away from the press conference to cover other coronavirus news.
While Lindell began speaking, CNN anchor Wolf Blitzer said the network "would continue to monitor the White House briefing and get the latest information from the president." Blitzer then noted the president said 1 million American lives could be saved by social distancing. Trump previously announced on Sunday he would extend the social distancing guidelines through April 30 and would release new information on Tuesday.
While most of the executives who spoke during Monday's briefing shared examples of how their companies are helping the response to the coronavirus, Lindell's speech mostly focused on religion. He called on Americans to "read our Bible" and spend more time with family during the crisis.
For CNN, the My Pillow Guy was the straw that broke the camel's back -- they cut away pic.twitter.com/FB0GIlbf6R— Lis Power (@LisPower1) March 30, 2020
"God gave us grace on Nov. 8, 2016, to change the course we were on," Lindell said, referring to the day Trump was elected, reports The Hill. "God had been taken out of our schools and lives, a nation had turned its back on god. I encourage you to use this time at home to get back in the word, read our Bibles and spend time with our families."
CNN cuts away from the White House coronavirus briefing when Trump invites the My Pillow guy up to the podium to talk.— Oliver Darcy (@oliverdarcy) March 30, 2020
Lindell said Trump "gave us so much hope," adding, "With our great president, vice president, and this administration and all the great people in this country praying daily, we will get through this and get back to a place that’s stronger and safer than ever."
In his speech, Lindell did mention MyPillow was dedicating 75 percent of its manufacturing to make cotton face masks. The company made 10,000 a day over the past three days, and Lindell hopes the company will be making 50,000 a day by Friday.
"I did not know he was going to do that, but he's a friend of mine and I do appreciate it," Trump said after Lindell finished.
Once the Trump-aligned My Pillow guy came on to give a free infomercial from the Rose Garden, CNN cuts away-- good on them for not giving oxygen to this partisan corporate bullshit.pic.twitter.com/QKsMif8YEu— Brian Tyler Cohen (@briantylercohen) March 30, 2020
Lindell is a longtime Trump supporter, donating $2,700 to Trump's 2016 campaign, according to OpenSecrets. He donated to other Republicans and donated $60,700 to the Republican National Committee in 2018.0comments
Lindell's presence at the press briefing was puzzling to many on Twitter, especially as the coronavirus pandemic worsens. The U.S. now has more cases than any other country in the world with more than 163,000 as of Monday night. More than 3,000 deaths have been reported.
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