In an exclusive interview with the Campus Times, a former aide to former President Trump explained that Trump’s approach to the COVID-19 pandemic was influenced by his belief that the entire crisis was an elaborate prank devised by Chinese president Xi Jinping.

“The real reason Trump hated China so damn much? Xi never stopped screwing with him,” the aid, UR alum Jonathan Adwell, told the CT over Zoom.

According to Adwell, the head of the Communist Party of China has quite the reputation among world leaders as a prankster. “Trump came back from the 2017 G20 with all sorts of stories: Xi jumping out from behind doors to scare Angela Merkel, Xi shaking Justin Trudeau’s hand and zapping him with a joy buzzer. Apparently, everyone was on edge around the guy.”

Among all the world leaders, however, Trump was Xi’s favorite target. Trump’s obsession with avoiding embarrassment meant he provided Xi with the best reactions.

“During his trip to Mar-a-Lago in 2017, Xi hid a whoopie cushion on Trump’s chair,” Adwell said. “Trump sat down and flew into a rage. Nearly flipped a table over.”

Xi got his kicks even when he wasn’t in the U.S. “He’d call the Oval Office phone from China all the time,” Adwell says. “‘Is your refrigerator running?’ ‘Do you have Prince Albert in a can?’ That kind of thing.”

So, when reports of a mysterious new virus began to emerge from China in late 2019, Trump refused to believe it. “He’s fucking with me again,” Trump reportedly said. Desperate not to be the victim of yet another one of Xi’s pranks, Trump ignored what he saw as a fake crisis.

“Refusing to wear a mask, the big rallies, insisting on keeping the economy open — it was all so Trump wouldn’t have to pick up the Oval Office phone one day and hear ‘Gotcha!’ on the other end again,” Adwell said.

“A few of us tried to convince him it was real. I mean, we all saw the rising infection numbers. It was happening right in front of all of our eyes,” Adwell continued. “But he threw a fit every time someone brought it up. ‘You really believe him?’ he’d screech. ‘The same guy who convinced me narwhals are half unicorn — you’re going to believe that guy?’”

Trump’s denial and mishandling of the COVID-19 pandemic and resulting economic recession led in part to his 2020 election loss. “It’s a shame,” Adwell sighed. “Xi gaslit the poor man until he snapped. It cost him everything.”

The only question now is: Will Xi continue to torment Trump, or will he set his sights on a new victim? 

“I think Xi probably sees prime victim material in the man who tripped on the stairs of Air Force One,” Adwell said. “Biden better watch his back.”

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