Thursday, July 16, 2020

Latest polls favoring Biden. And one Governor's struggles to protect his citizens from Trump's interference.

Here’s some good reporting by Charlie Sykes in this morning’s thebulwark.com email. He first covers the latest in poll results (favoring Biden) and then points us at an op-ed in the Washington Post by Maryland Governor Larry Hogan.

Trump’s “death star” implodes, Biden tops every poll

Just months ago, [now former campaign manager Brad] Parscale had promised the campaign would be activating what he called the “Death Star,” but succeeded only in creating a thousand Twitter memes about its spectacular failure.

Not even the fact that he kept Trump family members and girlfriends on his payroll was enough to save his grift after the fiasco in Tulsa. And then things got worse.

How much worse? Wednesday [July 15th] was the the worst polling day of Trump’s presidency..

It began with a CNBC poll showing that Biden was maintaining his lead in crucial swing states.

Here’s how Biden, the presumptive Democratic presidential nominee, and the Republican Trump matched up in individual states:

Arizona: Biden 51%, Trump 45%
Florida: Biden 50%, Trump 43%
Michigan: Biden 48%, Trump 42%
North Carolina: Biden 47%, Trump 46%
Pennsylvania: Biden 50%, Trump 42%
Wisconsin: Biden 48%, Trump 42%

Then came a Monmouth poll out of Pennsylvania, showing Trump down by 13 points.

This was quickly followed by a devastating Quinnipiac poll showing Biden leading Trump nationally by a staggering 15 percentage points. “There is no upside, no silver lining, no encouraging trend hidden somewhere in this survey for the president,” said Quinnipiac University Polling Analyst Tim Malloy.

As coronavirus cases surge and states rollback re-openings, former Vice President Joe Biden opens up his biggest lead this year over President Donald Trump in the race for the White House. Registered voters back Biden over Trump 52 - 37 percent, according to a Quinnipiac (KWIN-uh-pea-ack) University national poll released today. This compares to a June 18th national poll when Biden led Trump 49 - 41 percent. Since March, Biden’s lead had ranged from 8 to 11 percentage points.

Independents are a key factor behind Biden’s widening lead as they now back him 51 - 34 percent, while in June, independents were split with 43 percent for Biden and 40 percent for Trump. There is also some movement among Republicans as they back Trump 84 - 9 percent, compared to 92 - 7 percent in June. Democrats go to Biden 91 - 5 percent, little changed from 93 - 4 percent in June.

“Yes, there’s still 16 weeks until Election Day, but this is a very unpleasant real time look at what the future could be for President Trump.”

Wait, there was more. In late afternoon, the NBC/WSJ poll came out, also showing Biden leading by double digits, and showing a deadly political trend line for Trump.

The poll shows Biden ahead of Trump by 11 points among registered voters, 51 percent to 40 percent, which is well outside the poll’s margin of error of plus or minus 3.3 percentage points.

Biden’s lead in last month’s poll was 7 points, 49 percent to 42 percent.

In addition, the poll shows Democrats enjoying an intensity advantage heading into November, and it has Trump’s job rating declining to 42 percent — its lowest level in two years.

At this point, it is important to note that little to none of this is Brad Parscale’s fault. He wasn’t the one screwing the pooch on the pandemic, or staging cringey photo ops with bibles, or ignoring Russian bounties on American soldiers, or lighting the fires of racial tension, or delivering incoherent press conferences in the Rose Garden.

The election is shaping up to be a referendum on Donald Trump, and the far away galaxy doesn’t have enough lipstick to put on that pig.

BTW: the new guy? Bill Sepien, of Bridgegate

Larry Hogan: Why Didn’t Trump Help?

Maryland’s GOP governor has a blistering critique of Trump’s handling of the pandemic.

The Washington Post has that story in Fighting alone. I’m a GOP governor. Why didn’t Trump help my state with coronavirus testing?

My wife, Yumi, and I stood on the tarmac, waiting in cloth masks, on the morning of April 18. Finally, a Boeing 777 landed and taxied to the far corner of Baltimore-Washington International Marshall Airport. It was the first Korean Air flight ever to land at BWI, but it didn’t have a single passenger aboard. The crew of five had flown 14 hours, straight from Seoul.

“Congratulations, honey,” I told Yumi as the pilot turned off the engines. “You helped save a lot of lives.”

The plane was filled with 500,000 test kits for my state, where the coronavirus had already infected 12,308 Marylanders and killed 463 of them. The numbers were still climbing, and we would never be able to contain them without mass testing. “Anybody that wants a test can get a test,” President Trump had declared the previous month. In reality, only 2,252 Americans had been tested at that point in March. Across the country, my fellow governors were desperately pleading for help on testing. But in early April, Trump said it was the states’ job.

Yumi was born and raised in South Korea, a country that had, by then, erected a well-coordinated testing regime. So, with nowhere else to turn, Yumi and I asked President Moon Jae-in for help. He arranged the sale of a half-million test kits from LabGenomics, one of the world’s leading medical testing firms, for $9 million. It was a bargain considering the $2.8 billion in revenue we projected the pandemic would cost Maryland.

Now the kits had arrived. The crew members came down together, walked over and stopped six feet away. Yumi bowed, and the crew bowed in return. Following their lead, so did I. Then a caravan of Maryland National Guard trucks escorted by the Maryland State Police drove the tests from the airport to a refrigerated, secure warehouse at an undisclosed location. The federal government had recently seized 3 million N95 masks purchased by Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker. We weren’t going to let Washington stop us from helping Marylanders.

This should not have been necessary. I’d watched as the president downplayed the outbreak’s severity and as the White House failed to issue public warnings, draw up a 50-state strategy, or dispatch medical gear or lifesaving ventilators from the national stockpile to American hospitals. Eventually, it was clear that waiting around for the president to run the nation’s response was hopeless; if we delayed any longer, we’d be condemning more of our citizens to suffering and death. So every governor went their own way, which is how the United States ended up with such a patchwork response. I did the best I could for Maryland. Here’s what we saw and heard from Washington along the way.

Trump’s first public utterance about the coronavirus set the tone for everything that followed. He was in Davos, Switzerland, on Jan. 22, after the first American diagnosis. “Are there worries about a pandemic at this point?” asked CNBC anchor Joe Kernen.

“We have it totally under control,” Trump responded unhesitatingly. “It’s one person coming in from China, and we have it under control. It’s going to be just fine.” And off the president went for the next eight weeks. The rest of January and February were peppered with cheerful or sarcastic comments and tweets, minimizing the outbreak’s severity and the need for Americans to do much of anything.

… instead of listening to his own public health experts, the president was talking and tweeting like a man more concerned about boosting the stock market or his reelection plans.

America’s governors took a different approach. In early February, we descended on Washington for the annual winter meeting of the National Governors Association. As chairman, I had worked closely with the staff for months assembling the agenda, including a private, governors-only briefing at our hotel, the Marriott Marquis, to address the growing viral threat. We brought in Anthony Fauci, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, who was already widely admired but whose awesome knowledge and straight-talking style hadn’t yet made him a national rock star; CDC head Robert Redfield; Ken Cuccinelli, the acting deputy secretary of homeland security; Jay Butler, the CDC’s deputy director for infectious diseases; and Robert Kadlec, assistant secretary for preparedness and response at the Department of Health and Human Services.

They hit us with detailed presentations and the unfiltered truth, as well as it was known then. I remember hearing many dire claims: “This could be catastrophic. . . . The death toll could be significant. . . . Much more contagious than SARS. . . . Testing will be crucial. . . . You have to follow the science — that’s where the answers lie.”

In his op-ed Hogan recounts more of what Trump did and did not.. “where the answers lie” - To this day Tump continues either to not understand or not to care. Consider his attacks on Dr. Fauci. The blood of 138,000 citizens is on Trump’s hands.

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