Daily US Times: US hotline calls about disinfectant have risen after President Trump suggested injecting the substance to treat coronavirus, but he said he ‘cant imagine why’ the spike of calls are taking place.
On Sunday, the governors of Maryland and Michigan blamed the president for the spike in such calls.
Mr Trump said his remarks were made sarcastically after heavy criticism from medical professionals.
Disinfectants are hazardous substances and can be poisonous if ingested, doctors have warned.
A reporter asked Mr Trump during Monday’s coronavirus news conference that Maryland’s emergency hotline had received hundreds of calls in recent days, but the president replied: “I can’t imagine why. I can’t imagine that.”
He was then asked he took responsibility at all for the increase in calls, he replied: “No, I don’t.”
Maryland governor’s office said last week that it had issued a statewide alert warning against injecting or ingesting disinfectants following the president’s remarks.
On Thursday, Mr Trump made the disinfectant comments after an official presented the results of US government research that showed Covid-19 could be killed in minutes by bleach.
The president then said: “I see the disinfectant where it knocks it out in a minute. One minute. And is there a way we can do something like that, by injection inside or almost a cleaning?”
His remarks created huge criticism while doctors and pharmaceuticals companies are warning to follow the president’s suggestion. Trump also turned his remarks on Friday following the criticism.
When he was asked about this on Friday, he said: “I was asking a question sarcastically to reporters like you just to see what would happen.”
Mr Trump was also asked whether he would delay the presidential election in November during Monday’s press conference.
“I never even thought of changing the date of the election. Why would I do that?” he replied.
Former US Vice-President Joe Biden and Mr Trump’s presumptive Democratic opponent in the next election said last week he thought Mr Trump would “try to kick back the election somehow”.
Biden said this on Thursday at a virtual fundraiser: “Mark my words: I think he is gonna try to kick back the election somehow, come up with some rationale why it can’t be held.”
But the president told reporters the idea was “made-up propaganda” and he looks forward to that election.
Constitutional scholars have already noted that if a president wanted to change the timing of a White House election he would be unable to do so – even in an emergency – because the date is set by Congress.