The day after the shouting heard around the world, we of course have all the armchair commentators telling you who won, who lost, and why it matters. Yet in the age of Facebook and Twitter pulling the FACT CHECKER card on anything being posted ( when they go after the Babylon Bee it is always a hoot) who is to check the fact-checkers and their fact-checking?
Luckily, you have me.
When a good friend of mine who happens to be an elected official dropped this Business Insider story entitled Fact-checking the first Trump-Biden debate of the 2020 election on a Facebook group I belong to today, I knew I would be amused, and lo and behold I was.
So unlike these “independent fact-checkers,” I’m going to give you a Lil background on myself so there is no hidden bias to shield from you, the reader.
I did a video this morning about the overall Debate and what I thought of the hot flaming mess. I would rather be right than liked and part of that process is just looking for facts, even if it makes others mad or disappoints myself in views I hold.
So my foray into this is going to start with something that has affected this whole country in the COVD-19 pandemic. In bold are the quotes from B.I.
What they said: Trump claimed Biden opposed his decision to ban certain types of travel from China early on during the US coronavirus outbreak. He said of travel from China, “We closed it down.” Trump also said the US was “weeks away” from a COVID-19 vaccine.
So the claim here is that Trump was wrong about Biden opposing the travel ban when the President banned travel coming in from China on Jan 31st. Here is the link that B.I. used from CNN and the quote from the article…
Joe Biden’s campaign said Friday the former vice president supports President Donald Trump’s January 31 decision to ban foreign nationals who had been in China within the previous 14 days from entering the United States.
“Joe Biden supports travel bans that are guided by medical experts, advocated by public health officials, and backed by a full strategy,” Kate Bedingfeld, Biden’s deputy campaign manager, told CNN. “Science supported this ban, therefore he did too.”
Yet Joe Biden tweeted this on March 12th
A wall will not stop the coronavirus.
Banning all travel from Europe — or any other part of the world — will not stop it.
This disease could impact every nation and any person on the planet — and we need a plan to combat it.
— Joe Biden (@JoeBiden) March 13, 2020
Here is what Business Insider said on their FACT CHECK…
Fact-check: Biden’s campaign said in April that he supported Trump’s decision to restrict travel. Trump also did not impose a complete ban on travel from China, and thousands of people traveled to the US from China after the restrictions were announced. The restrictions were also implemented after the virus had already gained a foothold in the US.
So Biden did NOT support the President’s travel ban when it was first announced and did NOT come out in favor of it until 63 days later. Now I know some smart @$$ will say that the tweet doesn’t say China but the words “any other part of the world” mean China is included. That is a full two months of taking potshots as Biden did before finally agreeing with the ban.
Just as an added bonus being I have heard people saying Biden never called Trump Xenophobic for doing the ban. Actually, Biden did.
Video of Biden on Jan 31st in Fort Madison, Iowa…
America needs a president they can trust, especially at times of a crisis. You know, we have right now a crisis with the coronavirus, emanating from China. A national emergency, you know, worldwide alerts. The American people need to have a president who they can trust what he says about it, that he is going to act rationally about it. In moments like this, this is where the credibility of a president is most needed, as he explains what we should and should not do. This is no time for Donald Trump’s record of hysteria, xenophobia – hysterical xenophobia – and fearmongering to lead the way instead of science.
So it is perfectly acceptable to say Joe Biden at the beginning of this and particularly after Trump put the travel ban on China did NOT support it until two months later. Not including this fact is trying to obscure the facts which is what fact-checkers are NOT supposed to do.
The second part of my focus here is this quote from B.I. where they quote what the CDC director Robert Redfield said…
Regarding a coronavirus vaccine, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s director, Robert Redfield, recently told Congress: “If you’re asking me when is it going to be generally available to the American public so we can begin to take advantage of vaccine to get back to our regular life, I think we’re probably looking at late second quarter, third quarter 2021.”
Here is what Redfield said in full from Healio…
“I think there will be [a] vaccine that initially [will] be available sometime between November and December, but very limited supply and will have to be prioritized,” Redfield said during a Senate hearing about the U.S. response to the coronavirus.
Redfield said it will be up to the CDC’s Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices how the vaccine is prioritized. Health care personnel, essential workers and patients in long-term care facilities have been mentioned as priority groups likely to receive a vaccine first.
The general public will likely have to wait longer, Redfield said.
“If you’re asking me, ‘When is it going to be generally available to the American public so we can begin to take advantage of vaccine to get back to our regular life?’ I think we’re probably looking at the late second quarter, third quarter 2021,” he said.
Now notice he actually said the vaccine will be available in November or December of this year but we won’t be back to regular life until later next year which is fair. However, the whole quote was not included nor was the link which is odd to the quote which is odd for a FACT CHECK. Redfield readily admits how the vaccine is distributed will be up to the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices.
The CDC director of course is a very important part of the process to get this vaccine created and approved and his words do carry weight. Dr. Faucci agrees with a vaccine being approved by November or December or maybe even October and has said as much HERE.
However when you have one of the companies ( Pfizer ) that has close to a 2 billion dollar contract with the Federal Government to produce vaccines the goal should not be to produce it and let it sit but distribute it as safe and quickly as possible. That just seems like common sense.
I will go over some of the other odd facts left out in my next installment of FACT CHECKING THE FACT CHECKERS tomorrow.