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Trump says he was being sarcastic when he floated idea of disinfectant as a coronavirus treatment

Trump makes unsubstantiated virus suggestion
Trump makes unsubstantiated virus suggestion 03:54

During a signing ceremony for the second block of funding for the Paycheck Protection Program Friday, President Trump claimed he was being sarcastic when he floated the possibility of injecting COVID-19 patients with disinfectant. Hours earlier, the White House press secretary had given a different explanation for the remarks, saying they were taken out of context. 

"I was asking a question sarcastically to reporters like you just to see what would happen," the president told CBS News' Weijia Jiang in the Oval Office. 

In Thursday night's briefing, the president suggested that health experts look into the possibility of using disinfectant for coronavirus patients, perhaps by injection. Since then, the U.S. surgeon general and Lysol have come out strongly discouraging people from trying to ingest the product in any way.

"And then I see the disinfectant, where it knocks it out in a minute," the president said Thursday. "One minute. And is there a way we can do something like that, by injection inside or almost a cleaning. Because you see it gets in the lungs and it does a tremendous number on the lungs. So it would be interesting to check that. So that, you're going to have to use medical doctors with. But it sounds — it sounds interesting to me." 

The president also suggested Thursday night that health officials should look into shining light into the body as a potential treatment. 

The House passed the nearly $500 billion in funding for small businesses, hospitals and testing Thursday, and the president isn't ruling out potential future funding to combat the coronavirus pandemic. The U.S. surpassed 50,000 deaths from COVID-19 Friday. 

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