The White House on Wednesday denied Donald Trump endorsed the controversial “herd immunity” concept as a way out of the coronavirus pandemic and that he shunned mask-wearing despite his own words during a town hall with undecided voters the previous night.
White House Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany jousted with reporters during a combative briefing, saying the notion that Mr Trump or his advisers supported the notion of most Americans contracting the respiratory disease and becoming immune – even if hundreds of thousands more die – was merely something “cooked up” by the media.
“Herd immunity has never been a strategy here at the White House. President was noting herd immunity [develops] over a period of time,” she said.
Here is what Mr Trump said Tuesday night at the Philadelphia town hall: "Sure, over a period of time. Sure, with time it goes away. And you'll develop -- you'll develop herd -- like a herd mentality. It's going to be – it's going to be herd-developed, and that's going to happen. That will all happen. But with a vaccine, I think it will go away very quickly.
“That’s not Dr Atlas’ view. He’s never proposed herd immunity as a strategy, and neither has the president,” the White House press secretary told a reporter.