US President Donald Trump (File pic)
US President Donald Trump (File pic)

Why Trump still needs to try harder to resolve COVID-19 crisis in US

ANI | Updated: Jul 28, 2020 11:54 IST

Washington [US], July 28 (ANI): With reopening of the economy and children returning to school six months since the deadly contagion was first reported in the United States, US President Donald Trump still needs to regain control on the crisis triggered by the pandemic in a bid to fix an electoral victory in November, which runs directly through the health of his nation.
As per The Washington Post reports, Trump's shortcomings have perplexed even some of his most loyal allies, who increasingly have wondered why the president has not at least pantomimed a sense of command over the crisis or conveyed compassion for the millions of Americans hurt by it.
Some of his allies and opponents have even agreed that the President has failed at the one task that could help him achieve all his goals -- confronting the pandemic with a clear strategy and consistent leadership.
People close to Trump, many speaking on condition of anonymity, opined that the President's inability to wholly address the crisis is due to his almost pathological unwillingness to admit error; a positive feedback loop of overly rosy assessments and data from advisers and Fox News.
In recent weeks, with more than 145,000 Americans now dead from the virus, the White House has attempted to overhaul -- or at least rejigger -- its approach. The administration has revived news briefings led by Trump and presented the President with projections showing how the virus is now decimating Republican states full of his voters.
For many, however, the question is why Trump did not adjust sooner, realising that the path to nearly all his goals -- from an economic recovery to an electoral victory in November -- runs directly through a healthy nation in control of the virus.
"The irony is that if he'd just performed with minimal competence and just mouthed words about national unity, he actually could be in a pretty strong position right now, where the economy is reopening, where jobs are coming back," said Ben Rhodes, a deputy national security adviser to former president Barack Obama.

"And he just could not do it," Rhodes added.
Some aides and outside advisers have tried to stress to Trump and others in his orbit that before he could move on to reopening the economy and getting the country back to work -- and life -- he needed to grapple with the reality of the virus.
But until recently, the president was largely unreceptive to that message, they said, not fully grasping the magnitude of the pandemic -- and overly preoccupied with his own sense of grievance, beginning many conversations casting himself as the blameless victim of the crisis.
Trump's senior advisors have shared projections predicting that virus surges could soon hit politically important states in the Midwest -- including Michigan, Minnesota and Wisconsin.
Some close to the president say that when Trump claims, as he did twice last week, that the virus will simply "disappear," there is a part of him that actually believes the assessment, making him more reluctant to take the practical steps required to combat the pandemic.
"The best thing that we can do to set our economy up for success and rebounding from the last few months is making sure our outbreak is in a good place," said Caitlin Rivers, an epidemiologist at the Johns Hopkins Center for Health Security.
"People are not going to feel comfortable returning to activities in the community -- even if it's allowed from a policy perspective -- if they don't feel the outbreak is under control," Rivers told the Post. (ANI)