President Donald Trump has unleashed a humanitarian and economic disaster on his own people. There is no way to escape this fact.
While other places — Hong Kong, Singapore, Taiwan, South Korea and others — prepared for the coronavirus and took proactive measures to prevent its spread, Trump did nothing. He dismantled the White House task force responsible for pandemic responses, sat on his hands while the death toll escalated in other countries, called the virus a “hoax,” repeatedly claimed it would “miraculously” go away on its own, downplayed the intensity of the virus by comparing it to the seasonal flu and insisted for months that the situation was “totally under control” while his administration failed even to procure basic tests.
As a result, the United States now faces a domestic crisis unseen since the Great Depression. This is the result of political malpractice, not merely biological bad luck.
But Trump does not have a monopoly on political malpractice. As the crisis has spread, Democratic Party leaders ― House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) and presumptive presidential nominee Joe Biden ― have either been missing in action or short on solutions.
Incredibly, a handful of arch-conservative Republicans have been able to take public credit for advancing the popular, progressive idea of just sending every household a large check for the duration of the crisis. Pelosi explicitly rejected that very idea in early talks among House Democrats, overruling pleas from Democratic economists. With Democratic leaders thinking small, a majority of the public now actually approves of Trump’s catastrophic pandemic management, according to a new poll.
The leader of one party has caused a national calamity, while the leaders of the other have nothing much to say.
Joe's hidin' -- Hidin' with Biden. Hiden' with Biden will kill us all.
Joe's on sabbatical as he tries to learn how the internet works. Maybe Al Gore can tutor him?
Meanwhile a lot of people aren't Hidin' with Biden. Sahil Kapur (NBC NEWS) reports:
Voters under 45 continued to support Bernie Sanders by huge margins in Florida, Illinois and Arizona even as other groups came around to Biden. The gap has been largest with voters in their 20s or teens, mirroring a problem that hurt Hillary Clinton in key states: a lack of youth excitement.
“I'm deeply concerned about the impact that a lack of enthusiasm from young voters could have in a general election,” said Neil Sroka, a spokesman for Democracy For America, a progressive advocacy group that backs Sanders. “The consistent concern has been that nominating Vice President Biden would be essentially a repeat of the 2016 election.”
Failing to excite young voters in the primary has been a “significant red flag” for Democrats in recent decades, Sroka said: Barack Obama and Bill Clinton, who were backed by young people, went on to win the election, while Hillary Clinton, John Kerry and Al Gore lacked that enthusiasm and ended up losing.
Hidin' With Biden isn't helping his campaign as Marc Caputo (POLITICO) points out:
As new polling suggests that Trump’s approval for responding to the virus is improving, some of Biden’s fellow Democrats worry he’s paralyzed himself.
“Biden is only in limbo if he keeps himself there. He’s only in a predicament to the degree he chooses to view himself in one,” said Jeff Hauser, a veteran of progressive politics who is head of the Revolving Door Project, which watchdogs executive branch appointees.
“Joe Biden can either complain about the fact that he is not getting significant media coverage or he could do something to change that,” Hauser said. “He needs to offer an alternative and offer a running play-by-play critique of the failings of this administration.”
Some love Hidin' With Biden including worthless neoliberal Lawrence Summers (who never met a right winger in the 00s that he couldn't support for the Supreme Court).
Joe brought us the Iraq War. It continues. US troops remain in Iraq. Holly Johnston (RUDAW) reports:
US commitments in Iraq remain the same despite the transfer of a key military base to Iraqi security forces last week, US-led coalition spokesperson Colonel Myles B. Caggins III told Rudaw on Thursday.
“The coalition will continue to be partnered with Iraqi Security Forces. We will see that partnership in the future from fewer locations with fewer people, but our commitment is the same,” he said on Thursday night, adding that the transfer occurred due to the success of Iraqi forces in the ongoing fight against Islamic State (ISIS).
The handover of al-Qaim base, in Anbar province, marked the “first step of a US troop withdrawal from Iraq,” an Iraqi military official told Rudaw on Thursday.
Rebecca Kheel (THE HILL) adds:
The U.S.-led military coalition in Iraq is withdrawing some troops in part over the coronavirus pandemic, the coalition confirmed Friday.
“The coalition is adjusting our positioning in Iraq for two reasons: long-planned adjustments to reflect success in the campaign against Daesh; and short-term moves to protect the force during the coronavirus pandemic,” the coalition said in a statement, using an alternate name for the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria.
“Looking ahead, we anticipate the coalition supporting the Iraqi Security Forces from fewer bases with fewer people,” it added.
The following sites updated: