Timeline of Crenshaw’s COVID-19 Lies Goes Viral

July 7, 2020

HOUSTON, Texas -- Yesterday, the Sima for Texas campaign released a four-month timeline of Congressman Dan Crenshaw’s biggest lies about the coronavirus crisis.

And it went viral.

Here are some of our favorite responses:

  • U.S. Rep. Eric Swalwell (CA-15)

  • U.S. Rep. Ted Lieu (CA-33)

  • David Nir, Daily Kos Political Director

  • Charlie Anderson, Senior Advisor to U.S. Sen. Michael Bennet

  • Martina Navritilova, International Hall of Fame tennis player

See yesterday’s release with the full timeline below:

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DAN IN DENIAL: A Timeline of Crenshaw’s COVID-19 Lies

HOUSTON, Texas -- Governor Greg Abbott’s statewide mask mandate marked the final debunking of one of Congressman Dan Crenshaw’s central lies about the coronavirus crisis: a March 7 whopper that wearing a mask wouldn’t help stop the spread of COVID-19.

But that was just the tip of the iceberg — which is why we did a deep-dive into some of his worst coronavirus disinformation and created a timeline to help you keep track.

On March 7, Dan Crenshaw said masks DO NOT help prevent the spread of COVID-19, and claims they’re just for health care professionals. Now, masks are mandated across the state of Texas.

On April 20, Dan Crenshaw said “I think people can take personal responsibility. Wear a cloth mask.” He then defied his own calls for personal responsibility at multiple maskless campaign events two weeks ago as the virus ravaged Houston.

On April 22, Dan Crenshaw said Judge Hidalgo’s mask measure was “draconian” and would lead to “unjust government tyranny.” Now, Governor Abbott instituted the same order and Dan has changed his tune.

On May 15, Dan Crenshaw said, “We told everybody we would do this to flatten the curve and to save our health care system. Those missions have long been accomplished. There is no longer an argument.”  A month later, his backyard became the nation’s newest COVID-19 epicenter.

On May 19, Dan Crenshaw said, “We have a duty to live responsibly with our freedom,” specifically referring to wearing masks in close spaces. Time and time again, however, Crenshaw failed to live up to his own duty.

On May 21, Dan Crenshaw said the public does not need to follow Judge Hidalgo’s orders, patronizingly chastising her “immaturity” before claiming the virus “is not that bad and it never was,” and “our hospitals were never at risk of being overrun.”

On May 27, Dan Crenshaw said There is no guaranteed consequence with not wearing a mask….it’s not clear the mask would help.” He also questioned “whether the entire strategy of social distancing works,” expressed skepticism about “increasing the amounts of tests,” disregarded asymptomatic COVID-19 transmission, and praised the “anecdotal evidence” for using hydroxychloroquine — which was recently revoked by the FDA for emergency COVID-19 treatment. Clearly, he was dangerously wrong on all of these accounts.

On June 11, Dan Crenshaw said “We saved our hospital systems — they weren’t even close to being overwhelmed,” and “we wrongfully thought what happened in New York City could happen across the country.” Now, the coronavirus is ravaging Houston. On the same day, he claimed Judge Hidalgo’s emergency response to skyrocketing COVID-19 cases was an “irresponsible overreaction,” calling it “pure and simple fear mongering,” and assuring Houston has “enormous hospital capacity.” Now the New York Times reports: “As Coronavirus Slams Houston Hospitals, It’s Like New York ‘All Over Again’”

On June 12, Dan Crenshaw said the virus is not going to get transmitted...really I’m not even sure what public spaces it might get transmitted in” and “...it seems obvious that mass gatherings should be limited. One week later, Crenshaw hosted a maskless meet and greet as his city became the nation’s COVID-19 hotspot.

On June 14, Dan Crenshaw said that mask-wearers were simply “virtue-signaling” rather than protecting each other, contributing to the needless partisanship that has defined what should have been common-sense public health guidance. This past week, Governor Abbott’s order exposed Dan’s disinformation.

On June 18, Dan Crenshaw said “We can’t allow fear-mongers to use new cases to push for new lockdowns. We can trust Americans to understand the risks and safely reopen.” This is two days before Crenshaw attended two maskless meet and greets, including one packed-house event with Lt. Governor Dan Patrick, another coronavirus skeptic.

On June 27, Dan Crenshaw said that “death rates are decreasing and we have plenty of ICU capacity.” The death rate was and is currently rising across Texas. He also shared a Texas COVID-19 chart that was ten days behind and off by 3,500 cases — per day.

On June 29, Dan Crenshaw said the media “can’t find one iota of intellectual honesty” in response to accurate reporting of Texas’ COVID-19 disaster. He went on to malign the factual coverage of Texas’ caseload as “absurd and manipulative.” On the same day, he went on Fox News and blamed the COVID-19 spike entirely on the Black Lives Matter protests. While experts lay doubt on those claims, Dan continues to deflect blame as much as possible.

All together, it paints a damning picture of a climber politician who was so eager to appease leaders in his own political party and suck up to far-right donors that he ignored the evidence right in front of him, and left his constituents to suffer.

In response, TX-02 Democratic nominee Sima Ladjevardian issued the following statement:

“Governor Abbott’s order was a complete repudiation of the lies that Congressman Crenshaw told Texans — but Dan has been making dangerous comments for months. Now our community has become the nation’s COVID-19 epicenter, and Dan Crenshaw must answer for his endless falsehoods that risked our lives and potentially led thousands of Texans to suffer. Dan’s disinformation jeopardized our way of life, and he repeatedly failed to show personal responsibility by wearing a mask. Congressman Crenshaw betrayed the people he claims to represent with his shameless disinformation  and he owes every Houston family an apology.”

Last week, the Sima for Texas campaign unveiled a new digital video attacking Congressman Dan Crenshaw for spreading disinformation and endangering the health of Texas families. The video —Dan in Denial — features a compilation of Crenshaw’s most damaging comments in direct contrast to the advice of public health experts and state officials.

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Sima Ladjevardian (SEE-ma LAHJ-ee-VAR-DEE-un) is a lawyer, a mother of two, a breast cancer survivor, and a political activist who has called Houston home for more than 30 years. After fleeing the political upheaval of the Iranian Revolution, her family immigrated to the United States for their shot at the American Dream. Eventually settling in Houston, Sima has become a local leader in cross-cultural dialogue, bringing Texans of all backgrounds and faiths together for social justice. As an activist, she has worked tirelessly to turn Texas blue and elect candidates up and down the ballot — all while serving senior roles in Beto O’Rourke's senate and presidential campaigns. She has been recognized by the University of Houston for her tireless philanthropic and nonprofit work in the community, and she is fueled by the desire to fight for quality, affordable health care, justice, and unity in the United States Congress.

Timeline of Crenshaw’s COVID-19 Lies Goes Viral