CNN’s Dana Bash to Joni Ernst: You Ripped Obama’s ‘Failed Leadership’ on Ebola, What About Trump During Pandemic?

CNN’s Dana Bash spoke with Senator Joni Ernst (R- Iowa) Sunday morning and asked her about the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.

In particular, Bash brought up Ernst’s criticism of the previous administration’s handling of Ebola. When she was a candidate for Senate in 2014, Ernst knocked “failed leadership” from both her Democratic opponent and from President Barack Obama.

“Only two people in the US died from Ebola,” Bash said. “Right now there are almost 130,000 Americans dead from coronavirus. So if President Obama showed failed leadership then, do you think President Trump is showing failed leadership now?”

Ernst said that “we all have responsibility in stopping the spread” before talking about the importance of mask-wearing and social distancing.

“We all should do our part to make sure that we are protecting others as well. So this is a virus that’s not going to go away soon. We want to make sure that we are watching this and doing everything that we can as a federal government, including the research and development of therapeutics and vaccinations to make sure that we are doing the right thing as a nation,” she added.

Bash again brought up Ernst’s 2014 comments and asked, “Is the president right now exhibiting failed leadership?”

“No, I think that the president is stepping forward,” Ernst responded, “and we have Vice President Mike Pence that is spearheading the task force efforts on the coronavirus.”

“The pushback that we got from the Democrats when the president did try to shutdown travel from some of those hot spots — it was an extremely difficult environment to operate. You know, we know different today than we did at the beginning of the spread of the virus, and we should continually learn from those efforts and make sure we are doing the right thing by moving our nation forward.”

You can watch above, via CNN.

FDA Chief Squirms on Whether Trump Was Wrong to Say 99 Percent of Covid-19 Cases Are ‘Harmless’

Food and Drug Administration Chief Dr. Stephen Hahn repeatedly dodged on Sunday when asked to explain why President Donald Trump claimed 99 percent of coronavirus cases are “totally harmless.”

Hahn gave an interview to CNN’s Dana Bash on Sunday, who showed him a clip of Trump speaking from the White House on Saturday and saying “We have tested almost 40 million people. By so doing, we show cases, 99% of which are totally harmless.” Bash asked Hahn if he could back up that statement, but he evaded by answering “we know that cases are surging in the country, we’ve all seen the graphs associated with that. It’s too early and I’m not going to speculate on what the causation is there.”

After Hahn recited public health guidelines, Bash continued to dig into Trump’s “99 percent” claim since “I can tell you it’s not true, and that’s obviously not my opinion. It is fact-based on CDC estimates.”

“Only a third of coronavirus cases are asymptomatic. The World Health Organization says 20 percent of people who die of coronavirus need oxygen or hospital care,” Bash went on. “This is really important, probably one of the most important misclaims or, frankly, lies the president has put out there because it really affects people’s health…How does that make you feel as a member of his own task force?”

Hahn spun away from the core question again, so Bash tried once more to ask “You are working really hard to protect Americans. I have to ask you flatly to that end, to protect Americans, is the president wrong?”

Hahn’s answer:

I’m not going to get into who is right and who is wrong. What I’m going to say, Dana, is what I’ve said before. It’s a serious problem that we have, we’ve seen the surge in cases, we must do something to stem the tide.

The interview continued with Hahn being grilled on whether he’s okay with Trump holding campaign events amid the pandemic, and whether he thinks its safe to hold the Republican National Convention in Florida despite the recent spike in coronavirus cases throughout the state.

Watch above, via CNN.

Trump Son, Fans Manufacture Another Biden ‘Gaffe’ By Falsely Claiming He Said ‘I’m Joe Biden’s Husband’

First son Donald Trump Jr. and other prominent Trump supporters like Fox News’ Sean Hannity seized on some glitchy audio to claim Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden committed a gaffe by introducing himself as “Joe Biden’s husband.”

Hannity was among many prominent supporters of President Donald Trump who tweeted a clip of Biden from Friday’s virtual address to the National Education Association, and falsely quoted him as saying “I’m Joe Biden’s Husband, Joe Biden.”

The junior Trump elaborated, retweeting the clip and writing “This is ridiculous already. How can they let this guy possibly be the leader of anything let alone the leader of the free world?

These daily mistakes are not gaffes they are a serious issue for someone who could have the nuclear football, they show a lapse of basic reasoning.”

It’s evident even from the short clip being circulated that Biden was saying “I’m Jill Biden’s husband,” without hitting the last consonant, but a slightly longer version of the clip shows that the audio from the video call was glitchy, enhancing that effect. You can see that clip above, via PBS.

And anyone who has watched more than a few Biden appearances would know, Biden makes the joke all the time, and doesn’t hit the “L.” An honest person who didn’t know his wife’s name is Jill Biden could be forgiven for making the mistake, but here are a few examples in which Biden pronounces his wife’s name in nearly identical fashion.

Here are several examples of Biden making the same joke, with varying degrees of similarity to the clip Junior and Hannity seized on:

Biden campaign spokesman Andrew Bates hit back at Trump’s son, writing “Based on this, I’d recommend a hearing test,” and adding “Based on how this week you smeared Joe Biden for comforting his grandchildren at their father’s funeral, I’d recommend you find God and reevaluate your entire pathetic, gilded latrine of a life.”

This is just the latest in a series of attempts to manufacture a gaffe where none existed, an effort that has escalated along with Trump’s slump in the polls.

Trump Speech At Mt. Rushmore Reportedly to Attack ‘Left Wing Mob’ and ‘Cancel Culture’

Alex Wong/Getty Images

President Donald Trump’s late-night speech at Mount Rushmore on Friday will reportedly focus on attacking the “left wing mob” and “cancel culture,” according to ABC’s Will Steakin.

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The president will also reportedly “tell the truth about America’s history and he will tell the truth about those trying to tear it down and divide our country,” a senior Trump campaign official told ABC.

Reuters also reported that Trump’s speech will slam “the left wing mob and those practicing cancel culture” for “engaging in totalitarian behavior that is completely alien to American life.”

In June, Ivanka Trump complained that “cancel culture” resulted in her speech at Wichita State University Tech being pulled. On Tuesday, The Washington Post ran a column entitled “Donald Trump is the King of Cancel Culture.”

Trump will speak at Mount Rushmore around 10:30 p.m. EST. on Friday night with crowds expected to top 7,500 people.

Gov. Kristi Noem (R-SD) said the state won’t require masks or social distancing during his visit. South Dakota has had almost 7,000 positive coronavirus cases since the beginning of March.

Some have been critical of Trump’s decision to hold an in-person Independence Day celebration, including Cheyenne River Sioux Tribe Chairman Harold Frazier and the Democratic National Committee.

American Girl Company ‘Disgusted’ By Maskless Gun-Toting ‘Karen’ Doll Parody Ad

Facebook/Adam the Creator

The company that makes American Girl Dolls says it is “disgusted” by an ad parody featuring a gun-toting Walmart shopper who refuses to wear a coronavirus mask, and who goes by the pop culture-infamous moniker of “Karen.”

The ad parody features a scowling white woman in a purple sweatsuit carrying a nickel-plated semi-automatic handgun who is not wearing a face covering, while other shoppers keep their distance. It was posted to Facebook by Adam Padilla, who calls himself “Adam the Creator,” and was shared widely.

“This doll scares the shit out of me,” the caption read, and it featured the “American Girl” logo at the bottom.

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She wants to speak to Chucky

Posted by Adam The Creator on Monday, June 29, 2020

The parody is a play on the “Karen” phenomenon, which has become a hot topic following a slew of news stories featuring examples of white women engaging in behaviors characteristic of the term. One notorious example was the Central Park incident in which Amy Cooper was filmed threatening to falsely report that a Black man was attacking her, and then did just that.

There have also been a slew of incidents in which irate people act out when required to wear a mask in public places.

The ad parody circulated on Twitter as well, where it came to the company’s attention when a user named Donna wrote “I saw a post of an American Girl doll,Karen, who refuses to wear a mask and carries a gun as disgusting. Is this what we want to teach our children?”

“Donna, we were equally disgusted with this post. Please be assured we are taking the appropriate steps to ensure this is removed,” the company replied.

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Contrary to the doll in the ad parody, American Girl promotes safety by offering PPE for its dolls.

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The actual 2020 American Girl of the Year is a doll named Joss Kendrick, whose backstory includes being born with partial hearing loss.

Ouch! Only 27 Percent of Republicans Say They’d Mind if Trump Dumped Mike Pence for Nikki Haley

Spencer Platt/Getty Images

Vice President Mike Pence is still on President Donald Trump’s reelection ticket, but a shockingly low percentage of Republican voters say they would find it unacceptable for Trump to replace Pence with former UN Ambassador Nikki Haley.

In a new USA Today/Suffolk University poll, respondents were asked “Earlier you said you thought of yourself as a Republican. How would you feel if President Trump replaced Mike Pence as his running mate with former UN Ambassador Nikki Haley – would you say…?”

The choices given were “Excited, Acceptable, Not acceptable, Angry,” or “Undecided/Refused.”

Only six percent said they would be “angry,” and another 21 percent said they would find the switcheroo “not acceptable.”

On the plus side for Pence, only 11 percent said they would be “excited” to see Haley bump the current veep — not exactly a groundswell of support for the former South Carolina governor.

Another 35 percent said the move would be “acceptable,” while another 27 percent were undecided or refused to answer.

Pence did have 100 percent support from Black Republicans — or rather, Black Republican. According to the poll’s crosstabs, one Black voter was included in the question;s sample, and said it would be “not acceptable” to replace Pence with Haley. The thirteen Hispanic Republicans were slightly higher on Haley, with seven saying they’d be excited or find it acceptable to dump Pence, 5 saying it would not be acceptable, and one saying he or she would be “angry.”

Baseball Fever: 31 Major League Players From 19 Teams Test Positive as 2020 Training Resumes

Christian Petersen/Getty Images

As Major League Baseball resumes training for an abbreviated 2020 season, 31 players and  staffers have tested positive for the coronavirus.

The league recently announced the resumption of training in advance of a pandemic-shortened 60 game season, and The Associated Press reports that as players and staff reported for training camp, dozens came up positive for the virus:

Thirty-one Major League Baseball players and seven staff members tested positive for COVID-19 during intake for the resumption of training, a rate of 1.2%.

MLB and the players’ association announced the results Friday as teams resumed workouts for the first time since the coronavirus interrupted spring training on March 12, two weeks before the season was to start. Opening day has been reset for July 23, the latest in baseball history, and the regular season has been reduced to 60 games in the shortest schedule since 1878.

The positive tests occurred among 19 of the 30 teams, according to results of the samples sent to the Sports Medicine Research and Testing Laboratory in South Jordan, Utah. There were 3,185 samples collected and tested through the first week of intake testing.

The tests did not identify individual players who tested positive, but the Cleveland team did announce that outfielder Delino DeShields Jr. has tested positive.

Cenk Uygur Makes Case for Elizabeth Warren By Mocking Kamala Harris’ ‘Fake Laugh’, Says Biden May Not Even ‘Like’ Harris

Influential progressive host Cenk Uygur made the case for Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren as Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden’s running mate, mocking California Senator Kamala Harris’ “fake laugh” for several minutes and noting Biden “likes” Warren, but may not feel the same about Harris.

In an appearance on HillTV’s Rising, Uygur and co-hosts Ryan Grim and Saagar Enjeti went on en extended riff on Senator Harris’ laugh that went on for north of three minutes. The attacks were pegged to an interview that Harris did with Late Show host Stephen Colbert, in which she discussed her debate dustup with Biden.

Besides the extended mockery of Harris’ laugh, the trio claimed that Harris’ response — “It was a debate!” — amounted to an admission that her confrontation with Biden was mere “theatrics,” rather than an authentic expression of her true feelings.

But Uygur’s case for Warren wasn’t exactly full-throated either. After ticking off names of candidates he’d prefer, like former State Senator Nina Turner and Congresswoman Barbara Lee, he said “there’s just no way that’s going to happen.”

“So that only leaves you Elizabeth Warren. And so Elizabeth Warren is an enigma wrapped in a mystery,” Uygur said, citing her mixed record on endorsing progressive candidates, and concluding “among the realistic choices, she is by far the most progressive, so yes, to me that is the only way to go.”

Grim joked “Does that mean she has no chance?”, to which Uygur replied “No, amazingly she actually does have a chance.”

He explained that “politics also has a personal component,” and gave as an example that “Bernie Sanders would not attack Joe Biden under penalty of law because he was his friend. It was honestly incredibly selfish.”

“And Joe Biden likes Elizabeth Warren, even though they are not ideologically aligned, and I’m not sure he likes Kamala Harris,” he continued. “That’s why Warren is still in the ballgame. Otherwise they would have already picked Harris. I guarantee you that there’s a world of pressure, an unbelievable amount of pressure to pick Kamala Harris. The fact that Biden hasn’t picked her yet shows you that he’s actually considering Warren, and you should give him some credit for that.”

Running mate announcements are typically made within close temporal proximity to a party’s nominating convention, usually days or weeks beforehand. This year’s Democratic National Convention is slated for August 17-20, and will likely occur virtually.

Watch the clip above via HillTV.

Kayne West Announces His Bid For The Presidency

Kayne West announced that he is running for the presidency of the United States on the 244th anniversary of the nation’s Independence.

“We must now realize the promise of America by trusting God, unifying our vision and building our future. I am running for president of the United States Flag of United States! #2020VISION,” West said in a Saturday night tweet. The billionaire rapper previously floated the idea of running last year at the Fast Company’s Innovation Festival.

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“When I run for President in 2024,” West vowed last November. “What y’all laughing at? We would create so many jobs! I’m not going to run, I’m going to walk. When you see headlines saying Kanye’s crazy — one in three African Americans are in jail and all the celebrities are in jail also because they can’t say nothing, they got no opinion, they’re so scared!”

Telsa CEO Elon Musk has already voiced his support for the rapper tweeting, “You have my full support!”

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West has been a vocal supporter of President Donald Trump and even suggested last April that would vote for him come November.

“And we know who I’m voting on,” said West in an interview with GQ Magazine. “And I’m not going to be told by the people around me and the people that have their agenda that my career is going to be over. Because guess what: I’m still here!”

It is unclear if West has filed any official paperwork that would allow him to run for president. Both parties have already announced the dates for their national conventions where they are expected to nominate Trump and former Vice President Joe Biden.

On The Nation’s Birthday, Trump Takes Aim At ‘Marxists’ & The ‘Far-Left’ As Covid Cases Rise

President Donald Trump bashed the “far-left” and “Marxists” during his address to a large crowd in front of the White House on Saturday to celebrate the 244th anniversary of the nation’s independence.

“We are now in the process of defeating the radical Left, the Marxists, the anarchists, the agitators, the looters, and people who in many instances have absolutely no clue what they are doing,” Trump said. “Our inventor, scientists, doctors and researchers have improved the lives of billions and billions of people all around the world. Our brave astronauts, planted the American flag on the moon and America will be the first nation to land on Mars.”

The president also turned his attention to China, blaming them for COVID-19 as cases in the U.S. continue to rise. The speech comes as protests and autonomous zones have sprung up in cities across the country, including at the doorstep of the White House.

“And then we got hit by the virus that came from China. And we’ve made a lot of progress, our strategy is moving along well,” Trump added. “It goes out in one area and rears back its ugly face in another area. But we’ve learned a lot. We’ve learned how to put out the flame.”

Trump also took on the media, adding that by criticizing him they “slander American people”and “generations of heroes who gave their lives for America. “You are dishonoring people fighting for freedom in the Civil War — you slander them,” Trump said while addressing the media.

At least 127,000 people have died of the coronavirus in the U.S., with more than 2.8 million confirmed cases, according to the Washington Post. The large crowd gathered in front of the White House did not appear to be socially distancing.