Scientific American backs Biden with first presidential endorsement in 175-year history
Scientific American, the oldest continuously published U.S. magazine, offered its first presidential endorsement on Tuesday, backing Democratic nominee Joe Biden.
“Scientific American has never endorsed a presidential candidate in its 175-year history. This year we are compelled to do so. We do not do this lightly,” reads a letter from the editors in the magazine’s October issue.
The editorial criticizes President Trump’s “dishonest and inept response to the COVID-19 pandemic,” highlighting the over 190,000 Americans who have died from the coronavirus.
“The pandemic would strain any nation and system, but Trump’s rejection of evidence and public health measures have been catastrophic in the U.S. He was warned many times in January and February about the onrushing disease, yet he did not develop a national strategy to provide protective equipment, coronavirus testing or clear health guidelines,” Scientific American says.
Trump has regularly defended his response to the crisis, particularly citing his decision to ban travel from China, the origin country of the novel coronavirus, back in early February.
The magazine was also sharply critical of Trump’s proposed budget cuts for agencies including the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the National Institutes of Health, as well as his handling of the environment.
“In his ongoing denial of reality, Trump has hobbled U.S. preparations for climate change, falsely claiming that it does not exist and pulling out of international agreements to mitigate it,” the editorial reads.
“Joe Biden, in contrast, comes prepared with plans to control COVID-19, improve health care, reduce carbon emissions and restore the role of legitimate science in policy making. He solicits expertise and has turned that knowledge into solid policy proposals.”
The science journal’s criticism of Trump’s coronavirus pandemic response comes following a week of the administration playing defense after the release of recordings of journalist Bob Woodward’s conversations with the president showed his private acknowledgment of his downplaying the severity of the virus earlier this year.