Speed Reads

corrections & clarifications

Trump is not suspending trade or all travel with Europe, White House clarifies after Oval Office speech

President Trump said a couple of incorrect things in his scripted 11-minute Oval Office speech on the coronavirus epidemic Wednesday night, Trump and the White House clarified afterward. First, Trump surprised the markets by announcing that his restrictions on travel between the U.S. and European Union countries "will not only apply to the tremendous amount of trade and cargo, but various other things as we get approval. Anything coming from Europe to the United States is what we are discussing." The markets did not react well.

The White House said Trump misspoke and the restrictions apply only to people, not goods, and Trump reiterated that in a tweet.

Acting Deputy Homeland Security Secretary Ken Cuccinelli drew the task of correcting the White House and explaining that not everyone is barred from traveling to and from EU countries.

The travel policy, in fact, "does not apply to legal permanent residents, (generally) immediate family members of U.S. citizens, and other individuals who are identified in the proclamation," the Homeland Security Department said in a statement. And the health insurance industry had to clarify Trump's statement that insurance companies will waive co-payments on all coronavirus treatment.

It isn't clear how these errors got into Trump's teleprompter.