CNN just can’t leave the narrative alone even during a pandemic.
As my colleague Brad Slager reported, CNN helped spread the false narrative on Friday claiming that President Donald Trump told people to inject disinfectants like lysol or bleach.
The company that makes Lysol is urging customers not to consume its cleaning products after President Trump suggested the possibility of injecting disinfectants to protect people from coronavirus. https://t.co/cSOiBrItoX
— CNN (@CNN) April 24, 2020
As we reported, Trump did not tell people to inject disinfectants. He didn’t tell anyone to do anything. He was asking questions about the concept of UV light destroying the virus and acting as a disinfectant because the DHS had just finished a presentation on that subject during the White House briefing. He also immediately clarified that when he used the term “disinfectant” he was not talking about injecting anything into anybody, but that was effective for disinfecting “areas” or a “stationary object.”
But CNN’s S.E. Cupp went all in late last night spreading a New York Daily News story that not only continued to spread the false story, but then blamed Trump for a “spike” in people in NYC ingesting household cleaners.
You knew that would be coming, right? Just like media blaming Trump for people ingesting fish tank cleaner (although as we reported, there appears to be a lot more to that story).
But as Reason observes, the story doesn’t hold up. First, they note that the story doesn’t report anyone deliberately consuming the products, so the story fails immediately right there. Moreover no one required hospitalization, which pretty much indicates no one was swallowing bleach. Then Reason makes a great point: isn’t it logical that in the middle of a pandemic that people might have more exposure to such products when they are using them more than they might ordinarily, nothing to do with Trump? What’s the indication that this even has anything to do with Trump? Nothing at all.
As Reason reports, poison control centers around the country have seen a spike in such calls related to the virus since March, long before the Trump comments, because of people using more household cleaners, hand sanitizers and the like.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), 28,158 people called U.S. poison control centers about possible exposure to household cleaners in March 2020, compared to 25,021 in March 2019. The number of calls about possible exposure to disinfectants went from 12,801 in March 2019 to 17,392 in March 2020.
Cupp got ratioed six ways to Sunday for spreading this nonsense.
Many good people, people I thought were top notch, have murdered their credibility because they despise Trump. A 17 call increase over a year ago when people are handling a ton more Lysol and bleach. Come on. This is the definition of a BS story. This story is Stelterish.
— Carmine Sabia (@CarmineSabia) April 25, 2020
Guys, can we all agree to click the story? It’s people calling poison control over possible exposure, probably after all the warnings, not people showing up at ERs having given themselves a bleach enema because the President told them to. https://t.co/FiWsPFhV1V
— Emily Zanotti (@emzanotti) April 25, 2020
— Milton (@MiltonMjseg76) April 25, 2020
She was even reminded of that the wife of her colleague Chris Cuomo was recommending adding bleach to your bath as well as a boatload of other questionable things that are actual “suggestions” for treatments for the virus. But I don’t recall seeing Cupp calling out Cuomo’s wife.