WASHINGTON — Sidelined but not silenced, President Donald Trump demonstrated anew this past week he can’t be relied on to give a straight account of the disease that has afflicted millions, now including him. He heralded the arrival of a COVID-19 cure, which did not happen, and likened the coronavirus to the common flu even while knowing better.
The week featured the only vice presidential debate of the 2020 campaign and an emphasis on policy lacking in the virulent Trump vs. Joe Biden showdown of the week before.
Vice President Mike Pence asserted Trump respects the science on climate change when actually the president mocks it, and Pence defended a White House gathering that the government’s infectious disease chief branded a super-spreader event. His Democratic rival, California Sen. Kamala Harris, tripped on tax policy while wrongly accusing Trump of dismissing the pandemic as a hoax.