Wednesday, April 21, 2021


Yahoo News Reporter Apologizes to Trump for Making Inaccurate COVID-19 Test Claim

A Yahoo News White House correspondent apologized to President Donald Trump on Tuesday for asking a ..

By Sunday Herald Team , in US Politics , at April 29, 2020

A Yahoo News White House correspondent apologized to President Donald Trump on Tuesday for asking a question that incorrectly claimed that the United States had conducted fewer tests per capita for COVID-19 than South Korea.

Hunter Walker admitted that he misread a chart and mixed up numbers when addressing his question to the president during a news conference at the Oval Office with Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis.

“Overall, South Korea has done five times more tests than the U.S. per capita. Why is that?” Walker asked.

“I dont think thats true,” the president responded.

“That is true,” Walker asserted.

Shortly later, he was corrected by White House Coronavirus Response Coordinator Dr. Deborah Birx, who said the United States had directed its initial response toward areas where there was an outbreak and later offered specific numbers, saying that the U.S. testing rate had surpassed South Koreas.

“South Koreas testing was 11 per 100,000 [citizens], and we are at 17 per 100,000,” Birx said.

deborah birx and trump
deborah birx and trump
Response coordinator for White House Coronavirus Task Force Deborah Birx speaks as President Donald Trump meets with Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis in the Oval Office of the White House in Washington on April 28, 2020. (Mandel Ngan/AFP via Getty Images)

The United States has, as of April 28, tested 16,959 people for every 1 million residents, surpassing South Koreas figures of 11,869 tests per 1 million people, according to the COVID Tracking Project and the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

Trump then asked Walker if Yahoo News would acknowledge its error.

“Are you going to apologize, Yahoo?” Trump said.

In the Oval Office, I asked about test rates and infection rates compared to South Korea. President Trump and Dr. Birx said I was wrong that theyve done more tests per capita. Trump said I should apologize. They did not address multiple questions about our higher infection rate.

— Hunter Walker (@hunterw) April 28, 2020

Later Tuesday, Walker issued an apology to the president on Twitter stating that he had misread “the mobile version” of a testing chart.

We have passed South Korea in the number of tests conducted per capita. I misread the mobile version of this chart and am sorry about that @realDonaldTrump . Our infection rate is far higher though as I noted.

— Hunter Walker (@hunterw) April 28, 2020

“In the Oval Office, I asked about test rates and infection rates compared to South Korea. President Trump and Dr. Birx said I was wrong that theyve done more tests per capita. Trump said I should apologize,” Walker wrote. “They did not address multiple questions about our higher infection rate.”

“We have passed South Korea in the number of tests conducted per capita,” the reporter continued. “I misread the mobile version of this chart and am sorry about that @realDonaldTrump. Our infection rate is far higher though as I noted.”

The president, at a later event, thanked Walker for the apology and said he appreciated it.

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