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FLASHBACK: Media Blasted Trump’s China Travel Ban in January

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For all the criticism President Trump has received for initially publicly downplaying the risk that Coronavirus posed, he took the most significant action he could to stop its spread back in January when he restricted travel from China. The travel ban reduced arrivals from China by over 90 percent, and unquestionably slowed the spread of the virus into the U.S.

Of course, the media wasn’t thrilled with the decision that is common sense in hindsight, which they blasted as unnecessary, useless, and of course, “racist” (why not?)

The Heritage Foundation’s Lyndsey Fifield put together an extensive list showcasing the media’s ignorance on the subject – though had she included every possible example it would’ve been the length of the Iliad.

The New York Times called the ban an “emotional or political reaction,” quoting an epidemiologist.

The Washington Post misinformed us that such policies were only supported by “conservative lawmakers and far-right supporters of the President.” Most major nations have since implemented travel bans and closed their borders.

Trump was also criticized for not taking the World Health Organization’s advice. The same WHO that said on January 14thPreliminary investigations conducted by the Chinese authorities have found no clear evidence of human-to-human transmission of the novel Coronavirus (2019-nCoV) identified in Wuhan, China.”

Vox also told us that “travel bans don’t work” to stop the “Wuhan Coronavirus.” They did manage to amend that story…. but only to call the Wuhan Coronavirus the “Coronavirus” instead, now that they’re blasting anyone who uses their former terminology as racist.  

The media did have praised to heap on China though, for some reason:

Both the two main Democrat presidential contenders wouldn’t have banned travel from China – and Trump actually did so when it appeared to be a premature move. As The Federalist’s Margot Cleveland notes:

A contentious exchange during the March 11 House Homeland Security Committee hearing on the coronavirus response revealed this reality. During the hearing, acting Deputy Secretary of Homeland Security Ken Cuccinelli explained he had advised the president to ban travel from China even though “the academic model suggested not to do that.” Cuccinelli further stressed that “the president was well aware” that the existing models recommended against a China travel ban but that Trump nonetheless instituted the ban.

Criticism of Trump’s executive decision to put Americans first also found a voice in Biden. The presumptive Democratic presidential candidate took to Twitter, noting, “A wall will not stop the coronavirus. Banning all travel from Europe — or any other part of the world — will not stop it.”

Biden’s recently unveiled position statement on responding to the Wuhan virus made no mention of a travel ban, indicating that Biden, like his remaining primary opponent, Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders, opposes temporarily closing U.S. borders to protect Americans.

As bad as things are now – can you imagine how much worse they would’ve been had we kept travel open with China? Thank God we don’t have to.

Photos by Getty Images

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