After the biotechnology company Moderna became the second pharmaceutical firm in recent weeks to announce promising initial results from its clinical trials of a COVID-19 vaccine, the Trump administration was quick to claim credit for the success of the development effort.
Unlike the vaccine developed by Pfizer which announced its preliminary positive evaluation of over 90% efficacy just days after election day, the Moderna drug was part of the administration’s Operation Warp Speed rapid response effort.
Donald Trump was heavily criticized when he tried to take credit for the Pfizer vaccine despite the fact that it was developed independently of Operation Warp Speed, citing the U.S. government’s advance commitment to buy nearly $2 billion worth of the company’s product as his rationale.
While the new Modern vaccine was developed through the Trump administration’s program, many questions were raised today when the president’s daughter revealed an interesting timeline of her father’s initial discussions with the company in a self-congratulatory tweet for the news of the vaccine’s reported success.
Fact Check: This Moderna /NIH vaccine is literally the one that President @realDonaldTrump partnered with Moderna to create on January 13, 2020… I repeat January 13th, 2020.
Just be happy. This is great news for America and for the world! 🇺🇸 https://t.co/Oq9UTwOfet
— Ivanka Trump (@IvankaTrump) November 16, 2020
The date that Ivanka gives for the initiation of the relationship that she describes as a partnership between her father and the biotechnology company was a full week before the first case of COVID-19 was detected in the United States, and 10 days ahead of Donald Trump’s anti-prophetic claim that the threat from the coronavirus was “totally under control.”
If Ivanka’s chronology is true, the fact that the president was already making deals for a vaccine before acknowledging the magnitude of the danger that the outbreak could reach seemingly confirms the accusations — made by renowned journalist Bob Woodward in his book Rage — that Trump knew of the potential severity of the coming pandemic and did nothing to properly inform the public of its dangers, much less begin developing an effective strategy to combat it.
Instead, Trump continued to downplay the risks of the virus and reportedly only informed his select allies and wealthy supporters in private briefings of the coming risk, many of whom profited handsomely from their advance knowledge of the economic challenges and opportunities that the outbreak would bring.
The implications of the timeline revealed by the president’s daughter were not lost on those who read her post on Twitter, and they wasted no time in letting her know what they thought of her and her father’s apparent deceptions in regards to the virus.
— Bobhasdogsagain (@bobhasdogsagain) November 16, 2020
Exactly! Trump lied to all Americans.
Primary credit for the Moderna vaccine goes to Dr. Fauci.
Trump has done everything to discredit and silence Fauci, which led to putting Fauci’s life at risk with death threats. https://t.co/LitFIzEE0V
— The Voda Foundation (@Voda_Foundation) November 16, 2020
Great, but how’s that @Kodak vaccine coming along?
— Donald's Pandemic (@MustweSuffer) November 16, 2020
I love facts!
— Kathleen Zurcher (@KAZurcher) November 16, 2020
According to his daughter, it appears donald "partnered" with a company to work on a covid-19 vaccine in January 2020.
Which is after he began receiving intelligence reports about the extremely lethal threat covid-19 posed to the world… https://t.co/bFELBAYD5d
— Chris Vickery (@VickerySec) November 16, 2020
Possibly the kind of partnership where he might benefit from allowing excessive spread of the virus in order to prime the pump for vaccine sales later on? Desperate people, and their governments, will always be more willing to pay top dollar, eh?
I'd love to know.
— Chris Vickery (@VickerySec) November 16, 2020
— Helen _#ElectionDefender_ 5calls.org (@Cruellaisdevine) November 16, 2020
Why am I not f*cking surprised. They’ve all got their dirty fingers in the pie.
— SpāceResists (@SpaceResists) November 16, 2020
Whether Ivanka’s boasting “Fact Check” was an inadvertent disclosure of conspicuous evidence of a conspiracy in a profiteering opportunity or a wrong-headed attempt at stolen valor in the battle against the pandemic will require some serious investigation by a congressional committee or a special counsel team to determine.
Either way, perhaps it’s best if the First Daughter avoided any involvement in trying to rehabilitate her dad’s horrendous reputation as the man who launched 11.2 million COVID-19 cases and counting in this country and presided over the worst outbreak in the world.
He’s already lost the election and doesn’t need any more incriminating evidence of his dereliction of duty being revealed just as his immunity from prosecution is about to expire.
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Vinnie Longobardo is a 35-year veteran of the TV, mobile & internet industries, specializing in start-ups and the international media business. His passions are politics, music and art.