Coronavirus: The Global Pandemic’s Effect on U.S. Politics
Updated: Jan 13
With the sudden upsurge of Coronavirus cases, Vice President Mike Pence has been put in charge of coordinating the government’s response to the outbreak of the virus. Pence has selected Dr. Deborah L. Birx, who serves as the United States director to combat H.I.V and AIDS, as the coronavirus response coordinator for the White House. Dr. Brix, Vice President Pence, and US Health Secretary Alex Azar will be the primary Coronavirus officials.
President Trump seems to be very confident that the US will be able to effectively handle the virus. “We’re very, very ready for this,” said the President, adding that the Vice President has “got a certain talent for this.” Mr. Trump also mentioned that researchers were rapidly developing a vaccine — although some commentators point out that this statement contradicts Anthony Fauci, Director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, who said that he did not expect a vaccine to be ready for a year at earliest.
“USA is in great shape!” President Trump tweeted.
Although he has expressed his confidence in the team handling the Coronavirus, he has also warned at a news conference that the US should still be prepared in case the virus spreads — which clearly, it has. “Every aspect of our society should be prepared,” he added.
Many are criticizing the Trump Administration’s handling of the disease. Critics (particularly democrats) have said that he continues to lie even in the face of this epidemic. Trump recently announced on national television that testing is available for anyone who wants to get tested — which has been proven wrong by many people in the medical field. Additionally, critics have also criticized the European Travel Ban that he has implemented — particularly the fact that when it was first put in place, all of Europe was banned with the exception of the UK, despite numerous cases from that country as well. Furthermore, the action of travel bans, according to many experts, have never been effective in curtailing the spread of disease.
Republicans have claimed that Democrats are politicizing the Coronavirus. Fox Businesses' Trish Regan deemed their concerns as an attempt to impeach the president again. She along with many other Republicans have claimed that the liberal media is using the outbreak of coronavirus to try to vilify the president.
Along with the handling of the situation, Democrats also criticize the team put in charge of handling the White House’s response to the virus. Critics seem to condemn Pence’s role in the epidemic most — claiming that he had the worst handling of the HIV cases in Indiana history when he was governor in 2015 serves to be an indicator that he is not fit for the job.
Whether or not the United States is in fact prepared for the full effects of the virus is left to be seen.