Navigating Coronavirus — May 15

Navigating Coronavirus
6 min readMay 15, 2020

It’s been 78 days since President Trump said we’d soon have zero cases in the U.S. We now have 1,457,000 cases and 86,900 deaths — more deaths than any other country in the world.

THE LATEST

Message guidance on the latest developments with President Trump’s handling of the crisis.

1. TRUMP’S INCOMPETENT RESPONSE IS MAKING THIS CRISIS WORSE.

Trump continues to deny the severity of this crisis and yesterday’s blistering testimony showed us that every day he makes this crisis worse. Experts warned Trump the stockpile was insufficient. They warned we needed to take serious action sooner. And Trump wasted weeks — but even worse is that he is still failing to put in place solutions to slow the spread of the virus.

  • Trump is failing to solve this crisis >> Dr. Bright: “The window is closing to address this pandemic because we still do not have a standard, centralized, coordinated plan to take our nation through this response.”
  • Trump is costing us lives >> Dr. Bright: The government has no “plan on how to fairly and equitably distribute” remdesivir, a potentially life-saving coronavirus treatment.
  • Trump is putting health care workers at risk >> Dr. Bright: “I knew that we were going to have a crisis for our health care workers because we were not taking action. We were already behind the ball. That was our last window of opportunity to turn on that production to save the lives of those health care workers, and we didn’t act.”

In response, Trump’s White House tried to blame HHS — the latest example from his typical playbook of blaming others for his own failures.

  • NEW NAVIGATOR DATA >> 60% of Americans are concerned that Trump continues to downplay the health risks of coronavirus, pushing too aggressively to reopen the country even though that would put more lives at risk — including 62% of Independents, 58% of white women, and 55% of people older than 55.

2. AS MILLIONS LOSE JOBS, TRUMP IS LOOKING OUT FOR THE WEALTHY AND WELL-CONNECTED — NOT THOSE WHO NEED THE MOST HELP.

As we learn of skyrocketing unemployment claims from Americans who have received meager assistance in this crisis, Trump’s wealthy allies are making off with taxpayer dollars like bandits.

  • CNBC: “Private jet company founded by Trump donor gets $27 million bailout”
  • “The company appears to have received the largest grant of any private jet company on the list. The vast majority of the other 96 recipients of government funding or loans on the list are major commercial airlines, regional carriers or support companies… The funding is a grant rather than a loan, and doesn’t need to be repaid to the government.”
  • CBS: “A company whose largest shareholder is Trump campaign manager Brad Parscale received nearly $800,000 from the federal coronavirus relief fund for small businesses.”
  • “CloudCommerce received the $780,680 loan from Utah’s Cache Valley Bank on May 5. That’s more than six times the average PPP loan size of $125,000.”

3. TRUMP CONTINUES TO IGNORE EXPERTS, ENDANGERING AMERICANS.

Trump’s own experts like Dr. Fauci have made it clear that we must increase our country’s testing capacity to save lives, and the CDC has encouraged everyone to wear a mask to protect those around them. But even though Trump has been in contact with infected staffers, he refuses to listen.

  • The Hill: “Trump says testing may be ‘frankly overrated’”
  • REUTERS: “Without wearing a mask, Trump tours Pennsylvania mask distribution center”

NEW NAVIGATOR TRACKING NUMBERS . . .

TODAY’S POLLING DECK >> HERE

FULL TOPLINES >> HERE

  • Ahead of House action on the HEROES Act, Americans are broadly concerned by the actions of Republicans in Congress. We did a deep dive into attitudes towards congressional Republicans’ actions on coronavirus, and top concerns include calling for states to go bankrupt instead of receiving federal aid, voting against CDC funding, pushing Obamacare repeal, and refusing to stand up to Trump at all.
  • 58% of Americans, including 62% of Independents, are concerned by McConnell’s push to let states go bankrupt.
  • 45% of Independents express “very” serious concerns that congressional Republicans are giving away billions to the rich and powerful.
  • 7 in 10 Americans are concerned by Republican support for CDC cuts prior to the pandemic.
  • Democrats are more trusted than Trump on the coronavirus response. Democrats have a 10-point advantage over Trump on handling the coronavirus crisis (49–39%), a stunning gap for a sitting president to face against his opposition party in just one house of Congress.
  • Americans do not want politicians using this crisis to attack abortion access. As a growing number of Republican states are using the coronavirus crisis as an excuse to attack women’s access to health care, 65% of Americans, including 62% of Independents and 78% of college educated women, agree that they should stop doing anything to restrict women’s access to time-sensitive reproductive care.

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.

Trump is doing everything he can to change the subject, but his failed policies and bungled response to this crisis continues to hurt workers, families, and the economy.

It couldn’t be any clearer: Now that Wall Street and big business got their bailouts, Trump and his conservative allies are perfectly happy to drag their feet and leave workers and families high and dry.

  • Trump is even pushing for MORE help for massive corporations that would come at the expense of workers and their health.
  • It’s too late to stop Trump from bungling the response to this crisis, but Congress has an opportunity now to make the sweeping changes we need to help workers and families and get our economy back on track.
  • One important step would be to implement automatic triggers for support for workers and families that would continue as long as this crisis continues, and wouldn’t leave lives and livelihoods hanging in the balance every time Congress fails to act.

Navigating Coronavirus is a joint project of Governing for Impact, Groundwork Collaborative, The Hub Project, and Navigator Research.

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Navigating Coronavirus

A daily product to help you navigate Donald Trump’s handling of the coronavirus crisis and government response efforts. A project informed by @NavigatorSurvey.