Will the Pandemic End While Trump is President?

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The pandemic response in the US has been criticized by many on the left, and even some Republicans. Numerous articles on Donald Trump’s administration have been written, and many have zeroed in on the president’s seeming hesitance to address the pandemic.

While many wealthy nations used aggressive lockdowns and contact tracing to clamp down on the virus, the US didn’t follow suit.

Some have surmised that this was an attempt by the Trump Administration to not appear as though they were trampling on individual freedoms. However, some have alleged that Trump’s administration simply shunted the responsibility for handling the virus to state governments in order to shirk any blame for the virus’ impact.

Hands-off Attitude, or Incompetence?

The US has been hammered by the virus. Over 6 million people in the country have been sickened by the virus, and over 185,000 people have died from it so far. That means America accounts for around one fourth of global COVID deaths, despite only representing around one twentieth of the global population.

Many have blamed the Trump Administration for this situation.

Trump has been hands-off with the virus since March. He has allowed states to set their own responses to the pandemic. This has led to a patchwork of regulations and rules that has allowed the virus to spread easily across state borders. The lack of a federally-guided testing and tracing program let the virus spread out of control for months.

Many have chalked this up to Trump’s normal hands-off approach with state issues. However, his opponents allege that this is evidence of incompetence from the executive branch. The administration did, indeed, scuttle the federal pandemic response team less than a year after the election.

How Pandemics End

This has even led some pundits to claim that the pandemic won’t end until Donald Trump is no longer president. His lack of focus on the virus, and, at times, flippant attitude regarding it, has left few people confident in the administration’s handling of the situation.

Some have noted that a federal testing and tracing program, which will likely be necessary to slow the virus, won’t be put into place under Trump.

Meanwhile, former vice president Joe Biden is running on a platform of “building back better”. His approach could see a more concentrated federal effort to crush the virus and return the US to more normal times. There are still two months before the election, but many are already planning to throw in with Biden simply due to his promises regarding the virus.