President Donald Trump's one-time White House communications director advised his team to keep him away from television cameras and off Twitter during the coronavirus outbreak.
Anthony Scaramucci, who spent a tumultuous 11 days as Trump's communications chief, told MSNBC's "Morning Joe" the administration's response to the COVID-19 crisis was fatally flawed because the president's staff was afraid of bringing him bad news.
"It's a national strategy borne from one person but you have remember, too," Scaramucci said, "the president's staff is afraid of him, and so they don't like dealing with them and they're trying to make something that's very insane, which is President Trump, sound sane, and so this is the danger that we're dealing with right now. But the market does know that Donald Trump is actually the virus and he's replicated throughout the executive branch, and as more or less decapitated their ability to handle this crisis."
Scaramucci said, if he were still working in the White House, he would try to keep the president as quiet as possible right now.
"The first thing is have a group intervention with the president and explain to him what he is doing in terms of telling people we've got it under control and this litany of 18,000 or 20,000 lies at this point," Scaramucci said. "They've got to isolate him. He almost needs to go into a verbal communication quarantine to help out the rest of the nation."
"Second step, you have to do is listen to Dr. [Anthony] Fauci," he added. "We likely need a 14- to 21-day quarantine of all nonessential services in the United States. If you listen to any of the people that really understand this problem, directionally, we'll probably save the excess capacity issues we're going to have in the hospital. So, to me, step one, quarantine the president, get him off of Twitter, get him away from a television camera and then, step two, bring people in like Dr. Fauci to explain what's going on and take immediate and aggressive action here. You have to overcompensate for the mistakes that have been made, but we need to do it immediately."