How Many Deaths Are Acceptable for WH, Voters by Election Day?

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CNN political analyst and Politico writer Ryan Lizza decided during Monday’s briefing to follow girlfriend Olivia Nuzzi from April 27 and ask a snarky question about how many deaths would be acceptable to the White House in terms of President Trump’s reelection prospects. The only difference here was Nuzzi tried to trap Trump whereas Lizza’s verbal grenade was lobbed at White House Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany.

And as has been the case during McEnany’s tenure, the reporter in question became incensed.

 

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Here was Lizza’s question:

Kayleigh, we’re about to cross the 100,000 dead American [sic] milestone. What would — what does the White House view as having — on Election Day, what does the White House view the number of dead Americans where you can say that you successfully defeated this pandemic? Is there a number?

McEnany began by pointing out that “every loss of life counts” and that the President has repeatedly said as much. She also pointed to how models originally showed that “anywhere between 1.5 and 2.2 million people in the U.S.” could have died if American life had been allowed to continue as normal.

“Every one death is too many. We never want to see a single individual lose their life, but that being said, to be under significantly that high mark shows that the President did everything in his power and helped to make this number as low as humanly possible” she added.

It should be noted that, in the early moments of the pandemic’s explosion inside the United States, such statistics were the topic de jure across all mediums in the liberal media. But as they’ve been prone to do, those numbers have been nowhere to be found, as if the liberal media decided to wipe their hands and discard such apocalyptic claims (in favor of new ones about reopening).

What a way to avoid accountability! It must be nice.

Despite that, Lizza tried to punch back and, when McEnany told him that he was “asking the wrong question,” he snapped and waved his glasses at her:

LIZZA: But when voters go to the polls in November and they want to judge the President on his response to the President, what is the number of dead Americans that they should tolerate as – and where they can argue that yes, he successfully defeated the pandemic?

MCENANY: I think, you know, you’re asking the wrong question. The right question is where did — where did the data —

LIZZA: [INAUDIBLE] — that’s the question I want to ask Kayleigh, so please don’t tell me whether I’m asking a right or wrong question.

MCENANY: Where did — and I answered your question once. But if you ask it twice, it doesn’t make it any better of a question, so I’ll respond in kind. I’ve given you one answer. I’ll continue to extrapolate upon that — that he always listens to the science. The President, when Dr. Fauci and Dr. Birx said you need to shut down the economy, that was hard for the President.

Before moving on, McEnany took note of the rampant mental health and drug abuse crises in the country as a result of the economic, physical, and societal ruin the pandemic has wrought, but of course Lizza discarded those points and ghoulishly asked for an acceptable number of dead Americans.

Having seen enough, McEnany ignored him.

To see the relevant transcript from May 26’s briefing, click “expand.”

White House Press Briefing
May 26, 2020
2:24 p.m. Eastern

RYAN LIZZA: Kayleigh, we’re about to cross the 100,000 dead American [sic] milestone. What would — what does the White House view as having — on Election Day, what does the White House view the number of dead Americans where you can say that you successfully defeated this pandemic? Is there a number?

KAYLEIGH MCENANY: Yeah, you know, every loss of life counts. We say 100,000, but like the President says, you know, one death is something to be mourned. These 100,000 individuals have a face. The President takes this very seriously. That’s why he lowered the flag to half-staff for three days to remember these men and women. I think, you know, Dr. Birx said it best when she said in their estimates, they had anywhere between 1.5 and 2.2 million people in the U.S. succumbing to the virus if we didn’t shut down the economy. The President made the very hard choice of shutting down the economy so we avoided that extraordinary number. Every one death is too many. We never want to see a single individual lose their life, but that being said, to be under significantly that high mark shows that the President did everything in his power and helped to make this number as low as humanly possible.

LIZZA: But when voters go to the polls in November and they want to judge the President on his response to the President, what is the number of dead Americans that they should tolerate as – and where they can argue that yes, he successfully defeated the pandemic?

MCENANY: I think, you know, you’re asking the wrong question. The right question is where did — where did the data —

LIZZA: [INAUDIBLE] — that’s the question I want to ask Kayleigh, so please don’t tell me whether I’m asking a right or wrong question.

MCENANY: Where did — and I answered your question once. But if you ask it twice, it doesn’t make it any better of a question, so I’ll respond in kind. I’ve given you one answer. I’ll continue to extrapolate upon that — that he always listens to the science. The President, when Dr. Fauci and Dr. Birx said you need to shut down the economy, that was hard for the President. You know in a typical year, 120,000 people die of suicide and drug overdose. In a typical year and doctors have when you shut down an economy for an extended period of time, that number gets greater. People don’t show up for cancer diagnoses. There are a litany of results when you close down an economy, but closing down the economy for this amount of time kept us far below the 2.2 million number. As we start to reopen, keep in mind the people who are missing their screening appointments, the people who are not — who are succumbing to suicide and drug overdose because of economic hardship. This President made the right choice. It was a delicate balance and he did it exactly as he should, guided by data and we’re far below 2.2 million dead Americans because of the actions of president trump.

LIZZA: Do you have a number by Election Day?

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