U.S. President Donald Trump pauses during a Coronavirus Task Force news conference in the briefing room of the White House in Washington, D.C., U.S., on Sunday, March 22, 2020.
Jim Lo Scalzo | Bloomberg | Getty Images
President Donald Trump, in the midst of the biggest global health crisis in a century, used Twitter on Wednesday to take sarcastic shots at several of his perceived enemies over coronavirus fears.
After expressing purported concern over the health of Sen. Mitt Romney, R-Utah, and disgraced lawyer Michael Avenatti, Trump retweeted items sniping at Democratic presidential frontrunner Joe Biden, former special counsel Robert Mueller and Rep. Adam Schiff, D-Calif., a manager at Trump’s impeachment trial.
Romney, the 2012 Republican presidential nominee, tested negative for the coronavirus on Tuesday, a month after voting to remove Trump from office on an impeachment article of abuse of power.
“Gee, that’s too bad,” Trump quipped at a White House press conference on Monday after a reporter said Romney was in self-isolation because of having been exposed to Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., who tested positive for COVID-19.
“No, none whatsoever,” the president breezily said that day when the reporter asked if he was being sarcastic.
In a tweet Wednesday, Trump claimed to be happy with Romney’s negative diagnosis but called his fellow GOP-member a Republican in name only.
“This is really great news! I am so happy I can barely speak. He may have been a terrible presidential candidate and an even worse U.S. Senator, but he is a RINO, and I like him a lot!”
Romney is the only Republican senator to have voted to convict Trump during his impeachment trial.
About an hour after that tweet, Trump teed off in his tweet on Avenatti, who previously represented porn star Stormy Daniels in her legal battles with the president.
The cases were related to hush money payments to Daniels by Trump’s own attorney before the 2016 election to keep her quiet about a purported sexual tryst she had with Trump. The president denies Daniels’ claim, but repaid Cohen for the hush money payout.
Avenatti, who was convicted last month of federal criminal charges related to an extortion scheme against shoe giant Nike, recently had his request for bail denied by a judge. Avenatti’s lawyers had argued that he was at risk of contracting coronavirus in jail.
“Gee, that’s too bad,” Trump tweeted about Avenatti’s release being denied.
“Such a fine guy. Presidential aspirations you know!” Trump quipped, referring to Avenatti’s short-lived flirtation with running for the White House at the height of his media fame in 2018.
On Tuesday, Trump’s former personal lawyer and fixer Michael Cohen, who is serving three years in federal prison for crimes related to the Daniels payment and to financial misdeeds, saw his own bid for release to home confinement on coronavirus grounds shot down by another judge.
Fallen movie mogul Harvey Weinstein tested positive recently for the coronavirus after being sent to an upstate New York prison to begin serving a 23-year sentence for rape and sexual assault. In addition to Weinstein, at least one other person at the prison tested positive for the virus.
Weinstein may have contracted COVID-19 while being held at the Rikers Island jail complex in New York City.
Dozens of inmates at Rikers have tested positive for the coronavirus.
Trump retweeted a post by Fox News analyst Greg Jarrett blasting Mueller, who had investigated Trump’s campaign over its contact with Russians during the 2016 election and possible obstruction of justice by Trump.
The president was never charged in connection with Mueller’s probe.
Then Trump retweeted another Jarrett post about Schiff, the House Intelligence Committee chairman who was a manager during Trump’s impeachment trial in the Senate.
Soon afterward Trump retweeted a post by Dan Scavino, the White House social media director, on former Biden, the odds-on favorite to win the Democratic presidential nomination this year.
But before the Biden-related tweet, Trump retweeted Fox Business host Lou Dobbs, an ardent back of the president who was touting Trump’s touting new, higher public approval ratings amid the coronavirus crisis.