Headlines Opinion

Is Donald Trump Faking Coronavirus? Here’s Why People Think He Is

People think Donald Trump could be faking some or all of his coronavirus illness because it fits nicely into his reelection campaign.

  • Some believe Donald Trump is faking his coronavirus illness.
  • They point to the convenient timing just as bad press came out.
  • A swift recovery would further his rhetoric that the U.S. is nearing the end of the pandemic.

The past week has been wild in terms of political headlines—from the New York Time’s bombshell report on Donald Trump’s taxes to the most ridiculous presidential debate in U.S. history, there’s been a lot to digest.

But one headline takes the cake when it comes to shock-value: Donald Trump has coronavirus. For some, it’s par-for-the-course considering the president doesn’t typically wear a mask and seems to downplay the risk of transmission. For others, something about the president’s condition seems fake.

Some people question whether Donald Trump is actually sick. | Source: Twitter

Yes, there is a subsection of Americans who believe Trump is faking at best the severity of the illness and at worst, the entire thing. 

As conspiracy theorists present their case across the internet, it turns out that for Donald Trump, having coronavirus could be a convenient way to boost his standing ahead of the election. 

The Facts, Officially

First, here’s what we do know:

Having coronavirus just weeks before a huge election might seem like terrible timing. But in this instance, it’s working in Trump’s favor. 

Unbeknownst to many, an “October Surprise” is a relatively common political event during the lead up to a presidential election. Several presidents, from Nixon in 1972 to Bush in 2004, have supposedly benefitted from a well-timed news story that helped them win an election, though not all “October surprises” are manufactured.

The idea behind this is that a significant news story benefits one candidate in the lead-up to the election. In this case, people believe that Trump’s bout with coronavirus is his response to many ‘October surprises’ recently released by the Biden campaign.

Some see Trump’s coronavirus diagnosis as a way to hide from the headlines. | Source: Twitter

Coronavirus Dominates the Headlines

Some believe that by faking coronavirus, Trump ensures that the unflattering headlines about himself and his wife will take a backseat to updates about his health. 

This month, the president is up against reports that he skipped out on a decade’s worth of income tax and leaked recordings of his wife badmouthing Christmas and diminishing the challenges faced by refugee children and their families.

While Donald Trump was quick to label the NYT report on his taxes as “fake news,” the recordings of his wife are tough to dispute. 

Donald Trump’s coronavirus diagnosis is dominating every news network. | Source: CNN

Just 24 hours after announcing his coronavirus diagnosis, it’s become a top story at almost every news network. 

As well as keeping bad press off the airwaves, Trump’s brush with coronavirus comes with the added benefit of keeping Biden out of the headlines.

It Could Strengthen His Case Against Coronavirus

This weekend we learned that Donald Trump was being treated with an experimental cocktail of drugs and Remdesivir and that his symptoms were relatively mild so far. Speculation about the president’s condition worsening has been rife considering his age and elevated body mass index. But if he comes out of the hospital without incident, it adds to his rhetoric that we’re nearing the end of the pandemic.

Trump could say with certainty that doctors are finding ways to combat the pandemic via effective treatments. It would boost confidence among those questioning whether the severity of the pandemic has been overdone to oust Trump from the White House. 

Stock Market Gains Likely on the Back of Trump Recovery

Trump has been using the stock market as a gauge for his success as President. | Source: Yahoo Finance

Last, but certainly not least, is the fact that the stock market will almost certainly rally on his successful recovery. Not only does it remove the extreme uncertainty that exists when the president falls ill, but it adds to investors’ optimism that the world can soon return to normal.

Trump has been pointing to the stock market as a measure of his success for years, and he claims that Biden would tank equities. With that in mind, a last-minute rally before voters head to the polls would add to his case for reelection. 

Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in this article do not necessarily reflect the views of CCN.com.

Last modified: October 5, 2020 5:12 PM

Laura Hoy

Laura has been working as financial journalist covering US markets for more than a decade. Her work can be found in a wide variety of publications including Yahoo Finance, InvestorPlace, Nasdaq and Benzinga. Contact her at lmariehoy@gmail.com, see her LinkedIn profile here.