President Donald Trump, asked at Wednesday’s coronavirus press briefing about a White House official using the term “Kung-Flu,” brushed off the question while also claiming that he believes “100 percent” of Asian-Americans would agree with his use of “Chinese Virus” to describe COVID-19.
PBS White House correspondent Yamiche Alcindor asked the president if he believed it was “wrong” for an unnamed White House official to say “Kung-Flu” to CBS reporter Weijia Jiang’s face while discussing the pandemic, prompting Trump to repeatedly press Alcindor to repeat the slur while wondering aloud who that may have been.
After Trump did not answer whether it was offensive, Alcindor then asked whether the president felt his repeated use of “Chinese Virus” put Asian-Americans at risk. “No, not at all. Not at all,” Trump declared. “I think they probably would agree with it 100 percent. It comes from China. There’s nothing not to agree with.” Hate crimes against Asian-Americans, meanwhile, have been on the rise amid the coronavirus outbreak.