President Donald Trump described the coronavirus as the “Chinese virus” on Twitter on Tuesday, triggering his critics.
The president used the term while addressing critical comments from New York Governor Andrew Cuomo.
“Some are being hit hard by the Chinese Virus, some are being hit practically not at all,” Trump wrote. “New York is a very big ‘hotspot,’ West Virginia has, thus far, zero cases.”
Despite the virus originating in the Chinese city of Wuhan, the capital of Hubei province, the president’s critics have angrily accused him of being racist for using the term “Chinese virus.”
Trump also referred to the “Chinese virus” on Monday night, vowing to keep the airlines from going under as a result of dramatically reduced travel.
“The United States will be powerfully supporting those industries, like Airlines and others, that are particularly affected by the Chinese Virus,” he wrote. “We will be stronger than ever before!”
Chinese Communist Party propaganda has disparaged the term as “racist” and “reckless.”
“We call on the U.S. to stop finger-pointing at China. The utmost priority is for the international community to cooperate on fighting the virus,” party spokesman Geng Shuang said on Tuesday. “The U.S. should focus on its top priority, and play a constructive role in international cooperation on health security.”
The president also shared a comment on Twitter from conservative radio host Mark Levin, criticizing The Atlantic and other American media for spewing “China’s propaganda” about the virus.
The United States will be powerfully supporting those industries, like Airlines and others, that are particularly affected by the Chinese Virus. We will be stronger than ever before!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) March 16, 2020
Cuomo wants “all states to be treated the same.” But all states aren’t the same. Some are being hit hard by the Chinese Virus, some are being hit practically not at all. New York is a very big “hotspot”, West Virginia has, thus far, zero cases. Andrew, keep politics out of it….
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) March 17, 2020