If you were wondering how the Trump campaign might try to spin the president’s COVID-19 diagnosis into a positive for his re-election effort, the first hints started to emerge during a Monday morning Fox News appearance by Director of Communications Erin Perrine.
Asked by Fox anchor Sandra Smith if President Trump will “change his messaging” and stop “downplaying” the coronavirus moving forward now that he has dealt with it personally, Perrine touted the importance of “firsthand experience.”
“Firsthand experience is always going to change how someone relates to something that’s been happening,” she said. “The president has coronavirus right now. He is battling it head on, as toughly as only President Trump can. And of course that’s going to change the way that he speaks of it because it will be a firsthand experience.”
When Smith pressed Perrine to explain why the pandemic has taken a backseat to the economy and “law and order” in the Trump campaign’s messaging, the aide insisted that he’s “talked about coronavirus as well.”
“He’s talked about it all,” she continued. “And listen, he has experience as commander-in-chief, he has experience as a businessman, he has experience, now, fighting the coronavirus as an individual. Those firsthand experiences, Joe Biden, he doesn’t have those.”
Lumping in contracting COVID-19 with the president’s record of “creating jobs” and serving a commander-in-chief, Perrine concluded, “Those firsthand experiences are what are going to get President Trump four more years. So of course he talks about it differently now that he has lived through it.”
Her comments seemed to echo those made by the president himself in a video from Walter Reed hospital over the weekend. “It’s been a very interesting journey. I learned a lot about COVID,” Trump said. “I learned it by really going to school, this is the real school, this isn’t the ‘Let’s read the book’ school, and I get it, and I understand it.”