President Trump on Saturday claimed in an angry tweet that the “Lamestream Media” incorrectly reported that he had asked Dr. Deborah Birx questions during Thursday’s press conference – but footage proved that he did actually inquire about using “heat and the light” therapy as a coronavirus treatment.
“Was just informed that the Fake News from the Thursday White House Press Conference had me speaking & asking questions of Dr. Deborah Birx,” Trump tweeted.
“Wrong, I was speaking to our Laboratory expert, not Deborah, about sunlight etc. & the CoronaVirus. The Lamestream Media is corrupt & sick!” he added.
Trump’s claim was immediately torn to shreds by social media users who shared a clip from the Thursday briefing showing the president turning towards Dr. Birx to ask her whether she could look into using “light and heat” as a cure.
“This is probably an easy thing relatively speaking for you,” Trump said, talking to Dr. Birx. “I would like you to speak to the medical doctors to see if there is any way you can apply light and heat to cure. If you could. Maybe you can maybe you can’t, again I say, maybe you can maybe you can’t.”
“I’m not a doctor, but I’m like a person that has a huge, you know what,” Trump said as he pointed toward his brain.
“Deborah, have you ever heard of that? The heat and the light, relative to certain viruses, yes, but relative to this virus?” Trump asked his White House Coronavirus Response Coordinator.
“Not as a treatment,” Birx replied. “I mean, certainly … when you have a fever, it helps your body respond. But not as — I’ve not seen heat or light.”
“I think it’s a great thing to look at,” Trump said.
Multiple outlets shared video of the exchange between Trump and Dr. Birx, including C-SPAN and the Associated Press.
Brian Tyler Cohen shared the C-SPAN clip of the back-and-forth in the comments of Trump’s tweet.
“Not only were you speaking to her, she responded to you,” Cohen There’s literally video footage.
Not only were you speaking to her, she responded to you. There's literally video footage. pic.twitter.com/5Pg3LfXQfw
— Brian Tyler Cohen (@briantylercohen) April 25, 2020
Prior to his exchange with Dr. Birx on Thursday, Trump asked William Bryan – senior Homeland Security science and technology advisor – a series of questions regarding a report claiming that ultraviolet rays and heat have a potent impact on the pathogen.
“So, supposing we hit the body with a tremendous, whether it’s ultraviolet or just very powerful light, and I think you said that hasn’t been checked but you’re going to test it,” Trump said.
“And then I said supposing you brought the light inside the body, which you can do either through the skin or in some other way. And I think you said you’re going to test that too. Sounds interesting,” he added.
“And then I see that the disinfectant knocks it out in a minute. One minute. And is there a way we can do something like that. By injection inside or almost a cleaning – cuz you see it gets inside the lungs and it does a tremendous number – so it’ll be interesting to check that,” Trump said.
“So that you are going to have to use medical vouchers,” he added. “But it sounds interesting to me. So we’ll see, but the whole concept of the light the way that it kills it in one minute that’s pretty powerful.”
Here is Dr. Birx's reaction when President Trump asks his science advisor to study using UV light on the human body and injecting disinfectant to fight the coronavirus. pic.twitter.com/MVno5X7JMA
— Daniel Lewis (@Daniel_Lewis3) April 24, 2020