Budowsky: President Biden would end Trump's COVID-19 Katrina

Budowsky: President Biden would end Trump's COVID-19 Katrina
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On Jan. 27, former Vice President Joe BidenJoe BidenBiden says he will rejoin WHO on his first day in office Tammy Duckworth is the epitome of the American Dream Mexico's president uses US visit to tout ties with Trump MORE in an op-ed for USA Today warned that a global pandemic was a challenge President TrumpDonald John TrumpKimberly Guilfoyle reports being asymptomatic and 'feeling really pretty good' after COVID-19 diagnosis Biden says he will rejoin WHO on his first day in office Lincoln Project offers list of GOP senators who 'protect' Trump in new ad MORE was unqualified to handle, opposed Trump’s efforts to cut spending for the National Institutes of Health and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and called for America to lead aggressive international action to prevent COVID-19 from soaring out of control.

In May, researchers at Columbia University stated that if Trump had instituted strong actions to promote social distancing even one week earlier in March there would have been 36,000 fewer American deaths by early May, and if Trump had acted two weeks earlier, the number of Americans dying from the virus would have fallen by 54,000.

If Biden were president today, he would have acted to defeat the virus far quicker, stronger and more effectively than Trump, and mobilized allies around the world to act in concert, and tens of thousands of Americans would be alive today.

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In a column here on Feb. 27, I compared Trump’s failure to act effectively against the virus to the early days of President George W. Bush’s response to Hurricane Katrina and warned that Trump’s COVID-19 response could lead to a national health emergency, a significant number of deaths, a national recession and “Katrina-like political hell to pay for the president.

COVID-19 is Trump’s Katrina. Large numbers of Americans have died preventable deaths because of his incompetent response to the virus. Bush learned from his early mistakes, but Trump has learned nothing. As Trump continues and escalates his mistakes today, more Americans continue to suffer preventable illness and death.

Five weeks ago, in a column titled “Trump’s COVID-19 catastrophe,”I warned that the reopening of the economy was advancing far too much and far too soon and would lead to the number of Americans dying from the virus rising to 100,000 by June and, if there is a powerful second wave of the virus by flu season in the fall— which is now likely— to more than 200,000 by Election Day.

Consider the alternate universe if Joe Biden was president in January, and were president today.

Biden, unlike Trump, respects science and facts and truth. From January, Biden would have respected and followed the advice of leading experts, especially Dr. Anthony FauciAnthony FauciCDC to issue more guidance on school openings amid Trump criticism The Hill's Coronavirus Report: Teachers' union President Randi Weingarten calls Trump administration plan to reopen schools 'a train wreck'; US surpasses 3 million COVID-19 cases The Hill's 12:30 Report- Presented by Facebook - Trump threatens schools' funding over reopening MORE, and acted earlier and stronger, saving countless American lives and possibly avoiding the total shutdown that so damaged the economy.

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Biden, unlike Trump, believes in national unity, and would have worked with both parties and mobilized every American behind the common cause, not further divided the nation, as Trump does.

Biden, unlike Trump, believes in America as leader of the free world, and would have mobilized nations across the globe to unified common action.

Biden, unlike Trump, is a man of great common sense and would never have staged ludicrous and dangerous public rallies in virus-infected hot spots that endangered the health even of Trump’s campaign staff and supporters — many of whom had the common sense to avoid Trump’s humiliating and poorly attended rally in Tulsa, Okla.

Biden, unlike Trump, believes in medical science and would never, never talk about lowering the number of COVID-19 tests or shunning protective masks because Biden knows that is how to save lives and keep our economy open.

Biden, unlike Trump, believes in democracy and demands every American have the right to vote by mail rather than risk their lives by voting during a pandemic that Trump inexcusably failed to decisively defeat.

Biden, unlike Trump, believes the president should serve all of the people, radiate common decency and envision America as leader of the free world.

Biden, unlike Trump, would bring all living former presidents together to mobilize our people, protect our nation and rally the free world to the great causes of our generation for simple justice, good health and American democracy — which is why he defeats Trump by large margins in presidential polling.

Budowsky was an aide to former Sen. Lloyd Bentsen (D-Texas) and former Rep. Bill Alexander (D-Ark.), who was chief deputy majority whip of the House of Representatives. He holds an LLM in international financial law from the London School of Economics.