Trump, Biden clash fast over COVID-19 response.The battle over sharply

The battle over sharply different responses to the coronavirus is escalating between President Trump and Democratic nominee Joe Biden, with Democrats pointing to the heavy price and Republicans projecting optimism.

Trump, Biden clash fast over  COVID-19 response

With the election approaching, the vastly different approaches to COVID-19 are veering further apart whilst scrutiny rises.

Biden, who often wears a mask publicly, has called on every governor to mandate facial coverings. Trump, meanwhile, has pushed back on mask requirements, rarely wears one himself and gave his GOP convention speech at the White House to a largely maskless crowd of many people on the South Lawn.

Biden said he would support another "shutdown" to fight the virus if scientists recommended it. Trump, who opposes any longer lockdowns, attacked his rival's willingness to even entertain the thought.

The president has taken some steps to proportion protective equipment and testing production, but has repeatedly downplayed the necessity for more testing and shifted supply responsibility to governors. Biden has involved a federal mobilization modeled after production efforts during war II to proportion testing, and for harnessing the complete powers of the Defense Production Act to manufacture equipment that is more protective.

Biden's campaign has involved "specific evidence-based guidance" on when to open and shut different businesses and schools. Trump supported the initial round of restrictions earlier this year before transitioning to urging reopenings and tweeting a call to "LIBERATE" certain states and to "OPEN THE SCHOOLS!”

The pandemic has upended almost every aspect of life for Americans and caused massive economic damage, while killing over 180,000 people and infecting quite 5.8 million, thrusting it to the forefront of the presidential race.

Democrats say those numbers represent themselves, and therefore the price compared to other countries only underscores Trump's poor leadership during a time of crisis.

"This election is fundamentally a referendum on Donald Trump's handling of the pandemic," said Zac Petkanas, a Democratic strategist who directs the Coronavirus room, a gaggle seeking to spotlight Trump's failings on the virus.

"That's fundamentally the selection," he added. "Donald Trump has not taken this virus seriously. Joe Biden is and has."

Public health experts are in broad agreement that the U.S. is faring much worse than other developed countries.

Biden tweeted a graphic in the week showing that the U.S. has 4 percent of the world's population but nearly 25 percent of its coronavirus cases.

"President Trump has failed our nation," Biden wrote.

Trump has sought to counter those attacks by striking an optimistic tone, with a specific specialize in rapid progress toward a vaccine.

"It's getting to be announced, I believe, very, very soon," Trump said of a vaccine last month.

He has also sought to portray Biden as overly restrictive in his proposed response, characterizing a possible Biden administration together that might harm the economy while simultaneously infringing on personal freedom.

Trump seized on Biden's comment to ABC News this month that he would support another shutdown if scientists recommended it.

"Joe Biden wants to inflict a painful shutdown on the whole country," Trump said in his speech Thursday night accepting the Republican nomination.

In addition, while saying he recommends that folks wear masks, Trump hit Biden for supporting mandatory orders.

"We want to possess a particular freedom," Trump said this month.

Democrats say Trump is misreading the electorate by trying to argue Biden would go overboard in fighting a deadly virus that has ravaged the economy and lifestyle for nearly half a year.

"The American public wants to err on the side of caution," wrote Dan Pfeiffer, who was a senior adviser to former President Obama, earlier in the week. "They want to try to more, not less, to urge the virus in check.”

Pfeiffer added that Biden's openness to a different shutdown "was not only good policy, it had been good politics," while noting Biden only said he would support one if that is what experts recommended.

Republican strategist Doug Heye, though, said Biden's answer "gave oxygen to Trump at a time that he did not have much."

More broadly, though, Heye said the raging pandemic may be a "huge liability" for Trump.

The Republican message, he said, is now: "'Were you more happy in January than you were four Januarys ago?' which may be a harder message than, 'Are you more happy today?'"

An aggregation of multiple polls, from FiveThirtyEight, finds that 58 percent of USA citizens disapprove of Trump's handling of the pandemic, compared to 39 percent who approve.

A large majority of usa citizens , 76 percent, supported state laws to need masks in an NPR/Ipsos poll in late July, while a somewhat smaller majority, 59 percent, said they might support a nationwide two-week stay-at-home order.

Trump's pressure on public health agencies has led to concerns that he or his allies could also exert influence over the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to approve a vaccine before polling day, albeit it is not ready.

Democrats and public health experts have already expressed alarm at the political pressure on the FDA and therefore the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Just within the past week, FDA Commissioner Stephen Hahn walked back an overstatement of the advantages of a replacement treatment, convalescent plasma, while the CDC said asymptomatic people not got to be tested’ before later clarifying the move amid a firestorm from experts.

Biden seized on the confusion and backlash, but pointed the finger of blame at Trump.

"Look in the least the arrogance people are losing in anything he has got to say," Biden said on CNN on Thursday. "Going from inject bleach all the thanks to we do not need this testing, we do not need to test people. It's just absolutely bizarre."


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