FACT CHECK: Did Donald Trump Say, ‘People Are Dying That Have Never Died Before’?

Brad Sylvester | Fact Check Editor

An image shared on Facebook claims President Donald Trump said on March 17, “People are dying that have never died before.”

Verdict: False

There is no evidence that Trump ever made the statement.

Fact Check:

Twitter and Facebook are replete with posts saying Trump made the statement that “people are dying that have never died before” in response to deaths from the new coronavirus. But interestingly enough, none of the posts include a source to corroborate the claim.

This seems to be because there is no record of Trump ever making the statement. Several posts on social media specified that the statement allegedly came Tuesday, March 17, a day Trump held two events that were recorded and broadcasted: a White House task force briefing on the coronavirus outbreak and a meeting with tourism executives about the global pandemic’s impact on the industry. The alleged statement was not found in the transcript of either event.

There is also no record of him tweeting it on his Twitter timeline or in ProPublica’s archive of his deleted tweets. Other fact-checkers failed to find any evidence that Trump made the statement, and Snopes noted the saying is a “long-standing internet joke.” (RELATED: Can Inhaling Hot Air From A Sauna Or Hair Dryer Kill Coronavirus?)

The quote was attributed to former Alabama governor and segregationist George Wallace on Twitter back in 2008.

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Brad Sylvester

Fact Check Editor
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