In a new CNN documentary set to air on Sunday night, Birx said the initial wave of deaths caused by covid-19 in the US were mostly unpreventable, but the majority of deaths following the first 100,000 “could have been mitigated or decreased substantially.”
“I look at it this way: The first time, we have an excuse. There were about 100,000 deaths that came from that original surge,” Birx said. “All of the rest of them, in my mind, could have been mitigated or decreased substantially.”
Dr. Deborah Birx, the White House coronavirus response coordinator under former President Trump, said in a CNN documentary clip that she thinks the US could have saved hundreds of thousands of lives lost to Covid-19 following the pandemic's first surge. https://t.co/cB08LLbIaw pic.twitter.com/cXqvnYWYa7
— CNN Newsroom (@CNNnewsroom) March 27, 2021
But Birx was a Trump enabler. Towards the end of March 2020, the doctor heaped undeserving praise on the former president, going so far as to tout his comprehension of scientific literature.
Trump has “been so attentive to the scientific literature and the details and the data,” Birx said. “I think his ability to analyze and integrate data that comes out of his long history in business has really been a real benefit during these discussions about medical issues.”
“When history crushes Donald Trump and Jared Kushner for their response to the coronavirus, Dr. Birx might be crushed along with them.”
— Peter Wade (@brooklynmutt) August 3, 2020
At the same time, Birx gushed over Trump as cases were surging. The former president was advocating for states to reopen, saying, he was “hopeful to have Americans working again by Easter.”
The former president was downplaying the pandemic, saying, “We’ve never closed down the country for the flu. So you say to yourself, what is this all about?” Trump said.
At the time, the former president was pushing unproven coronavirus treatments, like hydroxychloroquine.
Additionally, the former president had told Bob Woodward that he intended “to always play [the virus] down.”
And on March 30, Trump said, “Stay calm, it will go away. You know it—you know it is going away, and it will go away, and we’re going to have a great victory.”
Since February 2020, more than 549,000 people in the United States have died of the coronavirus. And according to Rep. Ted Lieu (D-Calif.), Trump was not the only one responsible for hundreds of thousands of deaths. Enablers, such as Birx should shoulder some blame.
“The malicious incompetence that resulted in hundreds of thousands of unnecessary deaths starts at the top, with the former president and his enablers. And who was one of his enablers? Dr. Birx, who was afraid to challenge his unscientific rhetoric and wrongfully praised him,” Lieu tweeted.
A George Washington University doctor also responded to Birx’s recent remarks, saying she had a “duty to stand up and speak up.”