Trump’s Covid Response Scorecard: Failure Has Become Par for the Course
Trump’s COVID Response Scorecard: Failure Has Become Par for the Course
In January, Joe Biden sounded the alarm over the coronavirus outbreak. President Trump told the country that he had COVID-19 “totally under control” and that it would all “work out well.” In March, Biden laid out a comprehensive and robust plan to mount public health and economic responses to the emerging coronavirus crisis. At the time, Biden said that he hopes Trump adopts all of the ideas he outlined. In the intervening months, Biden has laid out what he would do as President to address the challenges facing our nation.
Now, 6 months later and with more than 125,000 Americans dead, more than 2 million Americans infected, and tens of millions of unemployed, here’s how Trump has done:
Level with the American People: FAILED
- Provide accurate and complete information on:
- Existing U.S. supply of essential medical equipment, and supply chain information, from manufacturing to delivery;
- Testing, including the number of tests completed, the results, and the average wait time for results.
- True extent of health disparities from COVID-19 and complete accounting of consistent gaps in racial and ethnic data.
- Clear, consistent, stepwise guidance for the containment and mitigation of COVID-19.
✓ Spew misinformation and racist slurs.
Surge Test-and-Trace: FAILED
Stand up a Pandemic Testing Board to:
- Massively surge the production of test kits and lab supplies;
- Coordinate the distribution to every state, tribe, and territory;
- Ensure adequate lab capacity, including university and medical school research centers, and the swift reporting of results;
- Provide clear guidance on who needs a test.
- Ensure every single person in this country gets free testing and treatment for the coronavirus, no matter whether they are insured or how they are insured.
- Form a Public Health Jobs Corps — hiring at least 100K Americans to help build a data-driven disease surveillance system to spot and stem flare-ups before they spread.
✓ Order a slow-down of testing to protect political interests.
Secure Supply Chain for Personal Protective Equipment: FAILED
- Prioritize domestic production of supplies through the Defense Production Action sufficient for hospitals, health care workers, and essential workers to not only address spikes but rebuild exhausted stocks.
- Task a Supply Commander to take command of the national supply chain.
- Ensure that training, materials, and resources reach underserved communities.
- Report to the American people how the Strategies National Stockpile and Defense reserves have been distributed and will be replenished.
✓ Accuse health care workers of stealing masks.
Protect Americans at High Risk, including Older Americans: FAILED
- Create a Nationwide Pandemic Dashboard so Americans can gauge in real-time COVID-19 risk in their zip codes and make informed decisions.
- Increase monthly Social Security Checks by $200 per month.
- Increase SNAP benefits by 15% and expand other nutrition assistance programs.
- Expand access to home and community-based services, and ensure those who rely on medication have the waivers they need for sufficient supplies.
- Temporarily increase Medicaid funding by 12% — up from 6% — one of the fastest, most effective means to concurrently address the health and revenue burdens states face when confronting an economic crisis
✓ Go to the Supreme Court to end ACA and take health care away from millions.
Protect Workers: FAILED
- Guarantee regular, reliable, free access to testing for every worker called back on the job.
- Guarantee emergency paid leave for anyone who gets COVID-19 or needs to care for a loved one who has it—for as long as they need to recover.
- Enact premium pay – a boost in essential workers’ paychecks.
- Ensure all essential workers qualify for child care assistance and other emergency support.
- Direct OSHA to set tough workplace safety standards.
- Pursue tough fines on corporations that do not abide by standards or recklessly expose their workers to COVID-19.
- Make Americans who lose their jobs financially whole by ensuring they get their unemployment insurance on time and in full.
✓ Seek inappropriate immunity shields for big businesses.
Let Science Drive the Development of Therapeutics and Vaccines: FAILED
- Establish and resource an Emerging Infectious Disease Clinical Trial Network to bring scientific talent together behind the most promising drugs instead of having different studies competing with each other for resources and patients.
- Accelerate a coordinated global approach to develop a safe, effective vaccine and the manufacturing capacity for the doses and related materials like syringes.
- Push dangerous, disproven drugs.
Support Small Businesses: FAILED
- Reserve half of new PPP funds for small businesses with less than 50 employees.
- Rapidly scale up employment insurance by reforming short-time compensation programs to save or restore millions of jobs
- Ensure equitable allocation to minority and women-owned businesses
- Launch a “Safer for Shoppers” program to build consumer confidence and enable shoppers to know businesses have done all they can to minimize the risk of COVID-19.
✓ Send recovery funds to Trump donors.
Guard against Fraud and Corruption: FAILED
- Appoint an independent Inspector General
- Make transparent who received the $500 billion in PPP funding.
✓ Fire the Inspector General overseeing CARES Act.
Help Reopen Schools: FAILED
- Provide greater funding for child care providers and schools, especially Title I schools, to reopen safely and help students who have fallen behind.
- Scale-up NIH-funded pediatric research partnerships.
- Build a Safer Schools Best Practices Clearinghouse so schools don’t have to improvise on their own.
✓ Downplay danger to kids and insist “You can be driving to school and some bad things can happen, too.”
Plan for the Future: FAILED
- Immediately restore the White House National Security Council Directorate of Global Health Security and Biodefense.
- Lay foundation for stronger, more resilient health care and disease surveillance systems with first-class medical personnel, equipment, and infrastructure.
- Restore an emphasis on science to the White House to tackle challenges from climate change to COVID-19.
✓ Sideline scientists and propose giant cuts to critical global health programs.