Trump Presented CBS With Book On His Health Care Record – Opened To A Blank Page

Topline

President Trump on Wednesday tweeted photos of 60 Minutes correspondent Lesley Stahl holding a large book ostensibly documenting his healthcare accomplishments – but one photo showed Stahl opening the book to a blank page, underscoring Democratic attacks against Trump’s health care record.

Key Facts

“Kayleigh McEnany presenting Lesley Stahl (@60Minutes) with some of the many things we’ve done for Healthcare. Lesley had no idea!” Trump tweeted along with four photos of Stahl holding and opening a large book handed to her by White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany.

But the only photo in which the book is open appears to show a page that is at least partially blank, something commentators and reporters were quick to point out.

Asked whether the book was empty, McEnany said in a statement to Forbes the book contains “everything President Trump has signed – executive orders and legislation – to improve healthcare for Americans” during his presidency, adding, “All of these items are public, just compiled in one place in this book.”

The tweet comes as part of Trump’s ongoing feud with Stahl after he abruptly ended a 60 Minutes interview with her on Tuesday before tweeting a video of her without a mask and threatening to post the interview ahead of its scheduled airtime.

Forbes has reached out to CBS for comment.

Key Background

Trump famously held a press conference in 2017 flanked by what appeared to be stacks of blank papers, which he said were documents focused on transitioning control of the Trump Organization to his sons. During Trump’s stay at Walter Reed for a coronavirus infection earlier this month, the White House released a photo – captioned “President Donald J. Trump Works from Walter Reed” – that appeared to show him signing his name to a blank sheet of paper. 

Chief Critic

“It is appropriate that the volumes of books printed by the White House detailing trump’s health care plan are all blank,” tweeted Rep. Bill Pascrell (D-N.J.), a reference to a long-time Democratic critique of Trump that he lacks a replacement plan if his push to eliminate the Affordable Care Act succeeds.

Big Number

59%. That’s the share of likely voters in a CNN poll released earlier this month who favor Democratic candidate Joe Biden on health care, while just 39% favor Trump. That makes health care Biden’s strongest issue in the poll aside from the coronavirus pandemic, on which he leads Trump 59% to 38%.

Crucial Quote

“For much of his first term, President Trump has claimed that significant proposals would be coming ‘soon’ or ‘in a few weeks’ or, often, ‘two weeks’ — notably health care,” wrote Yahoo News senior writer Christopher Wilson on Tuesday. “With two weeks until Election Day — and millions of votes already cast — the clock is ticking for Republicans as Democrats reprise their successful midterm strategy of warning that the administration and the GOP want to end mandated coverage for preexisting medical conditions.”