PHILADELPHIA (KDKA) – President Donald Trump sat down with undecided voters at a town hall event in Philadelphia on Tuesday night.
The mix of voters, including some from the Pittsburgh area, asked the president some tough questions.READ MORE: COVID-19 In Pennsylvania: State Reports 5,786 New Cases, 72 Additional Deaths
One of those questions came from a local student, asking why he downplayed the seriousness of the coronavirus earlier this year – a claim coming from author Bob Woodward, who says those comments were made by the president in recorded interviews earlier this year for his new book, “Rage.”
“Why would you downplay a pandemic that is known to disproportionately harm low-income families and minority communities?” Asked Ajani Powell.
“Well, I didn’t downplay it,” President Trump responded. “I actually, in many ways, I up played it in terms of action. My action was very strong because what I did was with China, I put a ban on with Europe, I put a ban on, and we would have lost thousands of more people had I not put the ban on. So that was called action, not with the mouth, but in actual fact, we did a very, very good job.”
The government’s response to the pandemic was not the only controversial claim the president denied during ABC’s town hall hosted by George Stepahnoplous, another voter asked about a report in The Atlantic, claiming he called U.S. soldiers killed in battle “suckers” and “losers.”
“Easy, because I never made those statements,” President Trump said. “They were never made by me. They said I stood over the grave of soldiers killed many years ago, and I said they were suckers. I never made that – you know we’ve had 26 people as of today come out to say it never happened and many people were there.”READ MORE: Death Penalty Sought Against Krisinda Bright, Ambridge Mother Accused Of Killing Her 2 Kids
Challenging President Trump for the White House is former Vice President Joe Biden. ABC News said it reached out to his campaign to schedule a town hall but was unable to find a date.
Biden didn’t have much to say about the president’s town hall event, except for one tweet.
— Joe Biden (@JoeBiden) September 16, 2020
The tweet references President Trump’s comment that Biden did not follow through on a national mask mandate he called for during the Democratic National Convention.MORE NEWS: Mustafa Alowemer, North Side Church Bomb Plot Suspect, Pleads Guilty To Aiding ISIS In Federal Court
In part, Biden said, “To be clear, I am not currently the president.”