Trump stokes coronavirus conspiracy theory involving Rod Rosenstein's sister
Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein (Shutterstock)

President Donald Trump is singling out a particular official with the Centers for Disease Control for warning against the possible spread of the coronavirus.


The president is furious that CDC officials warned Tuesday that the COVID-19 virus could potentially shut down schools and businesses, and he reportedly blames Dr. Nancy Messonnier, the director of the agency and the sister of former deputy attorney general Rod Rosenstein -- as Rush Limbaugh did on his national radio program.

"This person running this agency, who does she donate to?" Limbaugh said during his syndicated show. "Well, her brother is Rod Rosenstein. I’m guessing, let me check. I need to double-check this, because what I’m seeing here is 'Messonnier’s sister is Rod Rosenstein' -- unless Rosenstein’s had a sex-change operation, that can’t be right."

Trump, perhaps following the lead of Limbaugh and fringe right-wing blogs, has focused his anger on Messonnier, according to CNBC's Eamon Javers.

“She never should have said that,” a senior administration official told me. “It’s bad. It’s great to make emergency preparations, it’s not great to make predictions."