This is *exactly* how tone-deaf the Trump campaign is on Covid-19

This is *exactly* how tone-deaf the Trump campaign is on Covid-19

Camerota: Well, let’s talk about acting responsibly. I mean, just again with Wisconsin, are you at all concerned given that there has been an outbreak in the vice president’s orbit of people around him and that there is currently an outbreak — I mean, hospitals in Wisconsin are near capacity. And so is there — does that give you any pause or the vice president any pause about going there and holding a big rally?

Gidley: No, it doesn’t. The vice president has the best doctors in the world around him, they’ve obviously contact-traced and have come to the conclusion it’s fine for him to be out on the campaign trail.

Uh, that was not the question, dude.

Camerota wasn’t only asking Gidley if it was safe for Vice President Mike Pence to hold a rally at the Central Wisconsin airport on Wednesday afternoon. She was asking him whether it was safe for the thousands of attendees, given Wisconsin’s emergence as a hotspot for the virus. (In the last two weeks, according to data from The New York Times, Covid-19 cases have surged 46% in Wisconsin, deaths from the virus are up 113% and hospitalizations are up 41%.)

“The American people have the right under the First Amendment to peaceably assemble, too,” Gidley added.

That Gidley sought first and foremost to reassure Camerota that “the vice president has the best doctors in the world around him” speaks to how selfishly the Trump administration views this virus. And how tone-deaf their response continues to be.

This, like most things, starts at the top.

Following his hospitalization to deal with complications caused by his Covid-19 diagnosis in early October, Trump tweeted this:

“I will be leaving the great Walter Reed Medical Center today at 6:30 P.M. Feeling really good! Don’t be afraid of Covid. Don’t let it dominate your life. We have developed, under the Trump Administration, some really great drugs & knowledge. I feel better than I did 20 years ago!”

Which, well, good for him! But the idea that no one should be afraid of a virus that has killed more than 226,000 Americans because the President recovered from it is farcical.

“President Trump spent three days in the hospital. He arrived and left by helicopter. And he received multiple coronavirus tests, oxygen, steroids and an experimental antibody treatment.

“For someone who isn’t president, that would cost more than $100,000 in the American health system. Patients could face significant surprise bills and medical debt even after health insurance paid its share.”

Which is the point. The treatment that the President of the United States received as he sought to recover from the deadly virus is not a blueprint for almost anyone else. And the idea that Trump would use his own experience as such makes clear just how out-of-touch he is with the average American’s experience with this virus.

(Sidebar: It’s not Kim Kardashian tweeting “after 2 weeks of multiple health screens and asking everyone to quarantine, I surprised my closest inner circle with a trip to a private island where we could pretend things were normal just for a brief moment in time,” but it’s pretty bad.)
Gidley’s comment about Pence, then, is in keeping with the navel-gazing view that the White House has adopted about the virus. The President and his people are relentlessly focused on Covid-19”s impact on their political future rather than being primarily concerned about the fact that we have a raging virus with a death toll approaching a quarter of a million Americans and is projected to kill thousands more before we have a widely available vaccine.

Which, of course, is why we have never been able to even end the first wave of the virus in our country. And why every expert predicts that the next few months will the worst yet.

But don’t worry! Mike Pence is safe!

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