comScore Michael Steele Calls Out Trump for Shifting Coronavirus Blame

Michael Steele Calls Out Trump for Constantly Shifting Blame Over Coronavirus Failures: ‘Every Week There’s a New Villain’

Former RNC Chairman Michael Steele called out President Donald Trump for continually shifting the blame for coronavirus failures onto a rotating cast of scapegoats, noting: “Every week there’s a new villain that can be propped up to go after.”

Steele, appearing on MSNBC’s 11th Hour, made his comments to host Brian Williams after Trump attacked the World Health Organization in his coronavirus daily press briefing for the second day in a row. On Wednesday, he blasted the organization for having minimized “the threat very strongly” and suggested the U.S. would investigate W.H.O.’s alleged missteps, one day after claiming “They’ve been wrong about a lot of things” and threatening to pull U.S. funding for the group.

Trump’s recent attacks on WHO, however, represent a 180-degree turn from late February, when he was publicly praising the organization for “working hard and very smart.”

“This virus doesn’t recognize red or blue. It doesn’t respect state lines. It doesn’t respect states that have stay-at-home orders versus those who don’t,” Williams noted in the lead-up to a question to Steele. “How does this affect the Donald Trump’s base and is it going to be enough for his base to hear him say the World Health Organization made the wrong call?

“Yeah, I think it will be. And I think it’s already showing itself to be,” Steele said. “Those types of matters are the ones the president has consistently pushed out where he deflects the responsibilities of the downside of the preparation and response and the inadequate ability to get the needs met by the citizens across the state on someone else.”

Steele then noted that this wasn’t the first time Trump has pivoted to point the finger at someone or something else to deflect scrutiny from his own administration’s much-criticized response to the COVID-19 outbreak.

“So now this week is the W.H.O. Last week it was the governors. The week before that it was CDC,” Steele pointed out. “So every week there’s a new villain that can be propped up to go after, to castigate for the shortcomings and the problems and the failures that are in the narrative this particular week.”

“Of course as we saw today, you know, he’s Mr. Happy-Go-Lucky and you know, ‘We’re all going to be fine and the world is great,'” Steele said mocking Trump’s jovial tone at the Wednesday press briefing as the national death toll passed 14,000. “And then literally when he leaves the vice president gets up there and goes, ‘Well, people are still dying. Yeah, the curve may flatten in New York, but it’s increasing in Maryland and Louisiana.’ So, it becomes a bifurcated narrative that makes it hard for everyone other than his supporters to get behind and rally around what the president’s saying, because every day it changes and someone else is at fault because of that.”

Watch the video above, via MSNBC.

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