Coronavirus

Trump Asks CDC To Cook The Books On Virus Deaths

JM Ashby
Written by JM Ashby

The United States will cross 100,000 coronavirus deaths in the very near future and that itself is probably an undercount. There are reasons to believe we may actually already be at that number now but, even if that is an undercount, Trump would still like for the numbers to be counted even lower than they are today at soon-to-be 83,000.

The Daily Beast reports that the Trump White House is pressuring the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to revise the way they count deaths to exclude more of them.

President Donald Trump and members of his coronavirus task force are pushing officials at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to change how the agency works with states to count coronavirus-related deaths. And they’re pushing for revisions that could lead to far fewer deaths being counted than originally reported, according to five administration officials working on the government’s response to the pandemic. [...]

The White House has pressed the CDC, in particular, to work with states to change how they count coronavirus deaths and report them back to the federal government, according to two officials with knowledge of those conversations. And Deborah Birx, the coordinator of the administration’s coronavirus task force, has urged CDC officials to exclude from coronavirus death-count reporting some of those individuals who either do not have confirmed lab results and are presumed positive or who have the virus and may not have died as a direct result of it, according to three senior administration officials.

Yes, you read that right. They don't want to count some people who died even if they were sick with the virus.

The Trump regime has repeatedly pointed fingers at China and accused them of covering up the true extent of their outbreak and it's entirely plausible that China's ruling party did, but we're no better under Trump. The White House has refused to even consider a nationwide testing plan, in part, to keep our numbers lower than they truly are and now they want to exclude people who died with the virus.

Trump wishes he could cover up the severity of out outbreak to the extent that China probably has. He's jealous.

States' rights under the 10th Amendment is probably the only thing preventing Trump from doing it. Some Republican governors are making their own efforts to cover up their outbreaks, but Trump can't directly control all governors and states are free to release their own numbers.

  • Christopher Foxx

    The White House has pressed the CDC…

    How exactly does a building pressure an organization?

    Yeah, yeah. Naive, silly question. But it’s always bothered me that the fact that people doing something to gets hidden behind some building or corporate mask.

    “Reynolds Tobacco was found guilty of…” Nope. “The Amalgamated Hedge Fund Company had to pay a fine due to it’s use of inside information…” Nope. Some person decided to do something and is being allowed to avoid all consequences for it because “It wasn’t me that came up with that policy and gave the orders to take these actions. The “Company” did it.”

    God I hate that.

    But I digress.

    How exactly do the toadies at the White House pressure the people at the CDC? And why don’t the people at the CDC just have the decency to just say “No. Not going to do it. Not going to lie for you.”

    If enough people in positions of responsibility stopped being craven cowards they’d save lives.

  • Christopher Foxx

    “And Deborah Birx, … has urged CDC officials to exclude from coronavirus death-count reporting…”

    Well, that’s depressing.

  • Draxiar

    Treat trump’s request like he treats subpoenas.

  • muselet

    A couple of weeks ago, Righty media claimed—almost typed “reported,” silly me—the CDC had revised the number of Covid-19 deaths downward to something like 37,000 instead of the ~60,000 recorded.

    So it was just a matter of time before the administration started pushing for a downward revision of the death toll from CDC so Dear Leader’s dilatory and chaotic response to the pandemic doesn’t look as lethal as it has been.

    If this gets pushed through—over, I would hope, the strenuous objections of the professional staff of CDC and health departments nationwide—then in addition to number of confirmed Covid-19 deaths, cities, counties and states should start reporting total excess mortality.

    (Yes, yes, I know that number is flawed. Excess mortality includes people who died of things they’d normally have had treated in hospital, like heart attacks and strokes and burst appendixes, not just people who died of undiagnosed Covid-19. In the absence of adequate numbers of accurate coronavirus tests, though, the excess mortality number would be a useful counterweight to the bogus number the administration wants to use.)

    I sincerely hope everyone at CDC resists this madness.

    –alopecia