In the first of the two Reddit posts above, shared to r/facepalm, a “Breaking News” chyron timestamped at 4:06 PM Pacific read:
TRUMP AS U.S. NEARS 150,000 DEATHS: “NOBODY LIKES ME”
However, the image didn’t link to any additional information about whether Trump said “nobody likes me,” or in which context he might have done so.
C-SPAN Video and Trump’s Response to a Reporter
C-SPAN published video on July 28 2020 with the description, “President Trump Coronavirus News Conference.”
In the 26-minute and 36-second clip below, Trump took questions from reporters about COVID-19 and sub-topics (such as controversy over a Facebook video touting the disputed safety and efficacy of hydroxychloroquine). After praising the controversial video, Trump calls on a reporter to take a question. The reporter asks about a statement by Trump made about Dr. Anthony Fauci and hydroxycloroquine, in the form of retweeting material later flagged by Twitter:
… last night [on July 27 2020] in tweets that were deleted by Twitter, you said Dr. Fauci misled the country on hydroxychloroquine … how so?
In response, Trump rambles at length about Fauci, hydroxychloroquine, Dr. Deborah Birx, his belief that the drug failed to catch on as a COVID-19 treatment due to his support of it, and generalized approval ratings:
No, not at all. I think … I don’t even know what [Fauci’s] stance is on it. I … was just – you know, he was at the … he was at the task force meeting a little while ago.
I have a very good relationship with Dr. Fauci. You know, it’s sort of interesting — we’ve listened to Dr. Fauci … I haven’t always agreed with him, and it’s … I think, pretty standard. That’s okay. He did not want us to ban [stammers] put up the ban to China, when China was heavily infected – very badly, Wuhan. He didn’t want to do that, and I did and other things.
And [Fauci] told me I was right, and he told me I saved tens of thousands of lives, which was generous, but it’s – you know, I think it’s fact that I banned — I did the ban on Europe. But I get along with him very well and I agree with a lot of what he’s said … so, you know, it’s interesting. He’s got a very good approval rating, and I like that. It’s good. Because remember, he’s working for this administration. He’s working with us, John. We could have gotten other people. We could have gotten somebody else. It didn’t have to be Dr. Fauci. He’s working with our administration, and for the most part, we’ve done pretty much what he and others — Dr. Birx and others, who are terrific – recommended.
And he’s got this high approval rating, so why don’t I have a high approval rating with respect – and the administration, with respect to the virus? We should have a very high — because what we’ve done in terms of — we’re just reading off about the masks and the gowns and the ventilators and numbers that nobody has seen, and the testing at 55 million tests, we tested more than anybody in the world. I have a graph that I’d love to show you … perhaps you’ve seen it … where we’re up here [gestures] and the rest of the world is down at a level that’s just a tiny fraction of what we’ve done in terms of testing.
So it sort of is curious … A man works for us, with us very closely — Dr. Fauci, and Dr. [Deborah] Birx, also highly thought of … and yet, they’re highly thought of, but nobody likes me. It can only be my personality. That’s all. Go ahead.
In the broader context of the video, Trump addressed myriad topics in response to a reporter’s question about whether he believed Dr. Fauci “misled the country on hydroxychloroquine.” Trump maintained he had “a very good relationship” with Fauci, that Fauci said Trump “saved tens of thousands of lives,” and added that he has not “always agreed” with Fauci.
Subsequently, Trump mused that Fauci (and Birx) had a “very good approval rating,” asking, apparently rhetorically, why he and his administration did not appear to enjoy the same level of approval — referencing “the masks and the gowns and the ventilators and numbers that nobody has seen.”
As he wrapped up his response, Trump described it as “curious ” that Fauci and Birx were “highly thought of,” and added that “nobody likes me.”
A chyron reading “TRUMP AS U.S. NEARS 150,000 DEATHS: “NOBODY LIKES ME” circulated on social media, often without much context about the veracity or substance of the quote. On July 28 2020, Trump provided a response at length to a reporter during a coronavirus news conference, covering a range of topics before addressing the popularity of Fauci. At the end of the answer, Trump made the remark before moving on.
According to the Kaiser Family Foundation, a nonprofit organization focusing on public and national health issues throughout the United States, the official American death toll due to COVID-19 as of the end of July 28 2020 was 149,033.