Trump knew Covid was deadly but wanted to ‘play it down’, Woodward book says

US president gave Bob Woodward 18 interviews, forming basis of new book Rage, and said of virus: ‘This is deadly stuff’

Donald Trump knew the extent of the deadly coronavirus threat in February but intentionally misled the public by deciding to “play it down”, according to interviews recorded by one of America’s most venerated investigative journalists.

The US president gave Bob Woodward 18 interviews between December 2019 and July 2020. They form the basis of his revelatory new book, Rage, obtained on Wednesday by the Washington Post and CNN, in which Trump is condemned by his own words.

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