Trump defends social distancing protesters, shares suspicions of China during briefing

President Donald Trump, coronavirus task force, to hold briefing at 5 ET
Posted at 4:24 PM, Apr 18, 2020

President Donald Trump continued to defend those protesting his own administration's social distancing guidelines and his call for certain states to be "liberated" amid the coronavirus pandemic during a press briefing on Saturday.

During the briefing, Trump was asked about White House economic advisor Stephen Moore's statement to The Washington Post that those protesting "stay at home orders" in states across the country are "modern-day Rosa Parks."

Trump said Moore had delivered a "strong statement," but added that there is "a lot of injustice out there." Trump later added that he felt that some state governors had taken "stay at home orders" too far.

On Thursday, Trump said he would allow individual state governors to decide when they should relax social distancing guidelines to reopen their states' economies.

Trump also cast doubt on numbers reported by China. At one point, Dr. Deborah Birx shared a report that shows China's coronavirus mortality rate at 3.3 per 100,000 people.

"Does anyone believe those numbers?" Trump said.

Later, Trump was asked if China should face the consequences for the pandemic. He said the country should face some consequences if they "knowingly" spread the virus, but added they should not if the spread of the virus was "a mistake."