The right-wing media is so eager to find evidence that Central American child migrants are bringing diseases into the U.S. that they have now found an outbreak to blame on the kids. The only problem? There is absolutely no evidence of a connection.
WorldNetDaily breathlessly reports today on speculation by right-wing radio host Michael Savage that an increase in patients with a severe respiratory illness in two hospitals in Kansas City and Chicago is linked to Central American children:
On his show, Savage also excoriated the government agency, stating, “The CDC is claiming they don’t know why this rhinovirus is suddenly breaking out in your area. … Don’t you think it would be rational to say, ‘Wait a minute. Let’s look at these clusters to see if these kids are in schools where Obama dumped illegal aliens? You know that the government will not release the schools or the districts when they move these kids from Guatemala into this country? They won’t even disclose where they are?”
Rush Limbaugh also speculated about a connection:
Limbaugh asked, “Are the two stories related or are they not? Does this sweeping, mysterious virus that’s multiplying across the Midwest, does it have anything to do with it or not? We don’t know. That’s the answer. We just don’t know. But some people think there may be some kind of a connection.”
WND even provided this helpful map, which when you look at it doesn’t actually appear to show any pattern at all:
And, when you get further into WND’s story, you learn that the actual experts they contacted were quick to dismiss the idea of a connection between child migrants and the disease. A CDC spokesman told WND that there was “no connection”:
Benjamin N. Haynes, CDC senior spokesman for the infectious disease team, told WND there’s “no connection” between the virus outbreak and the Obama administration’s relocation of illegal aliens across America who have come across the U.S.-Mexico border.
And a spokesman for one of the hospitals said that the cases they were dealing with came from their “usual demographic”:
A spokesman for the University of Chicago Medical Center told WND, “At the University of Chicago Medicine, these cases we have seen have been typical of our usual demographic, from all walks of life.”
As it happens, this is the second time in two weeks that we’ve seen a right-wing news outlet accidentally debunk its own story on child migrants and disease.