Given that the mission of CNSNews.com these days is less about reporting news and more about shilling for the Trump administration, it comes as no surprise that CNS' coverage of the Trump administration's response to the growing coronavirus outbreak is first and foremost to protect Trump.
The first article CNS did on it was a Feb. 25 piece by Susan Jones giving space to Trump to mock Democratic Sen. Chuck Schumer for his criticism of Trump for not asking for more money from Congress to respond to the outbreak. "The headline: Trump Takes Flak After Requesting $2.5B to Deal With Coronavirus." That was joined, in an unusual bit of balance for CNS, by two articles by Melanie Arter featuring criticism of Trump from other Democrats.
From then on, it was deflection time in an attempt to downplay the severity of the outbreak:
- HHS Secretary: Coronavirus in China Could Produce 'Disruptions' in Medications Americans Need
- CDC Estimate: 45 Million Flu Cases, 61,000 Flu-Associated Deaths in 2017-2018 U.S. Flu Season
- Of Countries With Most Confirmed Coronavirus Cases, U.S. Has Fewest Per Capita
- 8,400 Travelers Being Monitored for Coronavirus in California, As Trump Defends His Response
- McCarthy: NIH, CDC Have More Money from Trump Than Obama Administration
- Pandemic? WHO Notes That Outside China, 81% of Coronavirus Cases Are in Just Four Countries
- Trump: Coronavirus Travel Restrictions Now Getting A+++ Grade Because ‘Border Security Is Also Health Security’
- Dr. Fauci: 80 Percent of Coronavirus Patients ‘Spontaneously Recover’
- Dr. Drew on Coronavirus: Hysterical 'Press Needs to Shut Up,' Fauci, CDC, Trump Doing What's 'Appropriate'
- HHS Secretary: Coronavirus Vaccine Would Be ‘Fastest Vaccine Delivery in Human History’
- Pence: Coronavirus Task Force to Focus on Nursing Home Compliance, Infection Control
- Mortality Rate Lower Than Past Coronavirus Outbreaks, Higher Than Seasonal Flu
(That last article, by Patrick Goodenough, was preceded by an editor's note effectively debunking the article's premise, pointing out that the current lethality rate for COVID-19 aroudn which the article was built "is based on known and confirmed cases only, and doesn’t take into account many cases not known or not reported.")
IN between, CNS served up coronavirus articles framed around its usual editorial agenda that aren't explicitly Trump-related. Bashing Democrats as wasteful because they want to "open the spending spigot" to fight coronavirus? Check. A Mark Levin rant? Check. Bashing a Democratic presidential candidate (in this case, Joe Biden) for statements he has made on the subject? Check.
And there was plent of covering up for Trump as well. A March 4 article by Arter played up NIH official Anthony Fauci's claim that testing of a coronavirus vaccine could begin in a few months, while burying Trump's misinterpretation of Fauci to suggest that the U.S. is "three months away from treating people who already have coronavirus" in the 13th paragraph.
CNS, needless to say, is not going to tell its readers that Trump has been spreading misinformation about coronavirus and his administration's response to it, or that he had to be corrected after arguing that the flu vaccine could be used to fight coronavirus.