President Trump never called the Wuhan coronavirus a "hoax"—multiple fact-checkers have said as much, but that didn't stop a Washington Post reporter from claiming he did during an interview with MSNBC.
"Had the president been heeding these warnings, he could've taken actions far, far sooner than he did and he should have in those weeks when he was saying it was a hoax, and it was not many cases, and it was gonna go away as if some miracle," said White House reporter Ashley Parker.
As Team Trump pointed out, even her own paper fact-checked Joe Biden's campaign ad that edited video, making it seem as though Trump said the virus was a hoax.
Why is Washington Post reporter @AshleyRParker intentionally spreading disinformation?— Trump War Room - Text TRUMP to 88022 (@TrumpWarRoom) March 23, 2020
She falsely claimed President Trump called coronavirus a "hoax."
He did not, & the lie has been debunked by 5 independent fact checkers, including her own paper.https://t.co/brqC2Kr85I pic.twitter.com/bk9JncSCQN
Disappointing to see @AshleyRParker of the Washington Post spread a known lie!@realDonaldTrump called Dems politicizing the coronavirus a “hoax,” not the virus itself.— Kayleigh McEnany (@kayleighmcenany) March 24, 2020
After watching the Senate the last 2 days, President Trump was proven right. Dems politicized this — BIG TIME https://t.co/FQLd8YXwOP
"The full quote shows Trump is criticizing Democratic talking points and the media's coverage of his administration's response to coronavirus," states WaPo's fact-checker analysis. "He never says that the virus itself is a hoax, and although the Biden camp included the word 'their,' the edit does not make clear to whom or what Trump is referring."
Here is Trump's full quote from the South Carolina campaign event (emphasis added):
“Now the Democrats are politicizing the coronavirus. You know that, right? Coronavirus. They’re politicizing it. We did one of the great jobs, you say, ‘How’s President Trump doing?’, ‘Oh, nothing, nothing.’ They have no clue, they don’t have any clue. They can’t even count their votes in Iowa, they can’t even count. No, they can’t. They can’t count their votes. One of my people came up to me and said, ‘Mr. President, they tried to beat you on Russia, Russia, Russia.’ That didn’t work out too well. They couldn’t do it. They tried the impeachment hoax. That was on a perfect conversation. They tried anything, they tried it over and over, they’ve been doing it since he got in. It’s all turning, they lost. It’s all turning, think of it, think of it. And this is their new hoax. But you know we did something that’s been pretty amazing. We have 15 people in this massive country and because of the fact that we went early, we went early, we could have had a lot more than that.”
Clearly, Trump was talking about the Democrats' politicization of the virus, which would be very easy for a "reporter" to verify.