- The Washington Times - Friday, April 24, 2020

The White House on Friday slammed the media for “irresponsibly” taking President Trump out of context, an apparent reference to the president’s discussing disinfectants’ effects on the coronavirus Thursday.

“President Trump has repeatedly said that Americans should consult with medical doctors regarding coronavirus treatment, a point that he emphasized again during yesterday’s briefing,” said White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany.

“Leave it to the media to irresponsibly take President Trump out of context and run with negative headlines,” Ms. McEnany said.

At Thursday’s White House coronavirus task force briefing, William Bryan of the Department of Homeland Security said direct sunlight and higher temperatures have had effects on destabilizing the virus and mentioned that tests on disinfectants’ effects were also being conducted.

“I can tell you that bleach will kill the virus in five minutes; isopropyl alcohol will kill the virus in 30 seconds, and that’s with no manipulation, no rubbing — just spraying it on and letting it go,” Mr. Bryan said.

Mr. Trump raised the possibility of hitting the body with ultraviolet or “very powerful” light.

“The whole concept of the light, the way it kills it in one minute, that’s pretty powerful,” he said.

He also made a separate point about the potential effects of disinfectants on the virus.

“I see the disinfectant, where it 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,” the president said. “Because you see it gets in the lungs and it does a tremendous number on the lungs. So it would be interesting to check that. So, that, you’re going to have to use medical doctors with.”The president went on to say that he wasn’t envisioning a common “injection.”

“We’re talking about through almost a cleaning, sterilization of an area,” he said. “Maybe it works, maybe it doesn’t work. But it certainly has a big effect if it’s on a stationary object.”

A number of media organizations quickly consulted scientific experts to confirm that people should not inject or ingest common household disinfectants such as Lysol.

Lysol’s parent company also issued a statement saying their product should not be injected.

Mr. Trump also predicted ensuing media coverage of his remarks would chide him for encouraging people to go outside amid the pandemic.

“I hope people enjoy the sun. And if it has an impact, that’s great,” he said. “It’s just a suggestion from a brilliant lab by a very, very smart, perhaps brilliant, man. … I’m here to present ideas, because we want ideas to get rid of this thing. And if heat is good and if sunlight is good, that’s a great thing as far as I’m concerned.”

• David Sherfinski can be reached at dsherfinski@washingtontimes.com.

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