Message guidance on the latest developments with President Trump’s handling of the crisis.
1. Trump continues to ignore experts and science — while refusing to do what’s necessary to re-open the country.
He has sidelined experts and is rushing to end social distancing in an unsafe way as we pass 50,000 dead Americans.
- NEW NAVIGATOR DATA >> 57% believe Donald Trump has too often made decisions that have ignored or overruled the advice of health experts.
- MORE >> 65% of Americans remain more concerned that we are going to end social distancing too soon than go on too long — a number that has shot up in the last week as Trump and some Republicans have cheered on anti-social distancing protests.
While Trump falsely insists testing is available, trusted experts disagree — and the shortage crisis is far from over.
- The Hill: “Fauci: US needs to ‘significantly ramp up’ testing”
- Republican Sen. Rick Scott: “We’re way behind still where we should be in testing”
- Gov. Cuomo, Thursday: “Enough tests are not available anywhere”
- AP: “10,000 deaths: Ravaged nursing homes plead for more testing”
Americans are scared to end social distancing until something changes.
- NEW NAVIGATOR DATA >> 66% are worried they or their families will not be able to get a coronavirus test if they need one.
- MORE >> 86% agree that, in order to safely reopen the country, we need the ability to test for coronavirus infections rapidly and on a large scale, a capability we don’t yet have.
We all want to re-open the country, but it must be done safely — and that starts with expanding testing nationwide.
2. Americans don’t trust Trump in this crisis.
- AP Poll: “Just 28% of Americans say they’re regularly getting information from Trump about the coronavirus and only 23% say they have high levels of trust in what the president is telling the public”
- NEW NAVIGATOR DATA >> By 25 points, Americans trust state and local leaders to handle the coronavirus more than Trump.
3. Trump’s actions are making the economic crisis worse.
- CAN’T MAKE IT UP >> One of Trump’s economic advisers on the “re-open America task force” actually suggested we just “put everybody in a space outfit.” (NYT)
- As 4.4 million more Americans lose their jobs, Trump is pushing bailouts for Big Oil and shoveling emergency small business loans to his campaign donors.
- NEW NAVIGATOR DATA >> Only 34% of Americans who have applied for unemployment benefits say they’ve been successful in receiving them.
**NEW** NAVIGATOR TRACKING NUMBERS …
TODAY’S POLLING DECK >> HERE
- Message Testing: China >> By simply acknowledging China’s mismanagement and cover-up of the outbreak, messages responding to Trump’s efforts to deflect blame onto China become much more effective. It takes us from -2 against Trump to +8.
- Americans hold Trump personally responsible for the lack of PPE and testing. Trump is being held less accountable, at this point, for rising unemployment and deaths.
- Americans are hearing more negative information about Trump as his approval declines — and most Americans want him to leave the briefings to the experts. A majority of Americans go away from Trump’s daily briefings with a negative impression — and even a quarter of Republicans say Trump should sit out the briefings and let the experts handle it.
ECONOMIC CRISIS IN CONTEXT
The latest on how the economic crisis sparked by coronavirus is actually fueled by years of President Trump’s conservative economic policies, focusing today on the latest unemployment numbers and Trump’s conservative allies’ refusal to help workers and families.
The economy continues to tailspin for workers and families while Trump and his conservative allies focus on bailing out corporations and helping the wealthy and well-connected.
- With another 4.4 million workers filing for unemployment yesterday, and 26.5 million total workers filing claims over the past five weeks, we now have an estimated 20% unemployment rate and are deep into an economic catastrophe.
- Still, the official unemployment rate, due in early May, will likely be an undercount since it only includes people who are actively seeking work.
- One reason why Trump may not be too concerned: This crisis is disproportionately impacting young people and people of color.
- Now that corporations and the rich got their bailouts, Trump’s conservative allies in the Senate are blocking any additional support for workers, families, and communities.
- Especially egregious is their opposition to support for the teachers, nurses, and firefighters who are among the 20 million workers employed by states and are in danger of losing their jobs if conservatives get their way — and also disproportionately impacts women and Black workers as well as unionized workers.
It didn’t have to be this way. Trump’s conservative policies have left workers, families, and the economy vulnerable to a crisis like this.
- That is why policymakers must work quickly to address the immediate economic needs and work to fix problems in our economy — like inequality and poverty — that made us all more vulnerable
Navigating Coronavirus is a joint project of Governing for Impact, Groundwork Collaborative, The Hub Project, and Navigator Research.
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