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While Donald Trump maintained that the novel coronavirus pandemic is not as dire as scientific experts have repeatedly warned, it appears his administration was launching a plan to have celebrities quash public concern, thereby boosting the president’s image.
The problem? Few wanted any part.
According to House Oversight Committee documents obtained by Politico in an article published Thursday, Trump’s administration was concocting an enormous taxpayer-funded ad campaign allegedly to educate, but in actuality to improve the optics of the president’s fumbling of the situation.
Led by Health and Human Services spokesman Michael Caputo, the actual theme of the campaign was “Helping the President Will Help the Country,” Politico reports. And that message was going to be delivered via beloved and trusted celebrities. Lists totaling 274 stars and musicians were compiled. The result: A couple said yes, way more said no, and mostly, there was no response.
According to documents obtained by Politico, 22 stars said no, including Selena Gomez, Dwayne Johnson, Trevor Noah, Carrie Underwood, Luke Bryan, Britney Spears, Christina Applegate, Mark Wahlberg, Kate Hudson, Viola Davis and Zoe Saldana.
Two said yes: Marc Anthony and Dennis Quaid.
Perhaps most noteworthy were the “Additional Notes” on those who did not reply. Judd Apatow’s entry read: “Believes Trump does not have the intellectual capacity to run as President, want him to be removed out of office in 2020.”
Upon seeing the story, Apatow responded, “I have yet to be proven wrong on that.”
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