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A Yahoo reporter apologized to President Trump on Tuesday after falsely claiming South Korea has done five times more coronavirus tests than the Unites States per capita during an Oval Office meeting with Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis.
Yahoo reporter Hunter Walker asked Trump about America’s test rates compared to South Korea and was scolded by the president after he botched the data his question was based on.
“Overall, South Korea has done five times more tests than the U.S. per capita,” Walker said. “Why is that?”
Trump told Walker that he didn’t believe his statistic was true but the reporter was adamant that his numbers were accurate.
“That is true,” Walker argued.
Dr. Deborah Birx quickly confirmed that his numbers were off. As of April 28, the United States has tested 16,959 people for every one million residents, compared to 11,869 tests per one million people in South Korea, according to the COVID Tracking Project and CDC.
"Are you going to apologize Yahoo? That's why you’re ‘Yahoo’ and nobody knows who the hell you are,” Trump said. “Nobody knows who you are, including me.”
Several mainstream journalists initially took Walker’s claim as gospel and took to Twitter to scold Trump for his harsh response.
Walker then hopped on Twitter himself and apologized to the president, blaming the gaffe on misreading a chart.
“In the Oval Office, I asked about test rates and infection rates compared to South Korea. President Trump and Dr. Birx said I was wrong that they've done more tests per capita. Trump said I should apologize. They did not address multiple questions about our higher infection rate,” Walker tweeted after the exchange.
“We have passed South Korea in the number of tests conducted per capita. I misread the mobile version of this chart and am sorry about that @realDonaldTrump. Our infection rate is far higher though as I noted,” Walker added.