WaPo: Trump Took COVID Seriously After Learning His Supporters Were Getting Sick

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Trump’s shortcomings have perplexed even some of his most loyal allies.

According to The Washington Post, until recently, President Trump was “largely unreceptive” and “not fully grasping the magnitude of the pandemic.” It was not until “senior advisers began presenting Trump with maps and data showing spikes in coronavirus cases among ‘our people’ in Republican states” that he began to acknowledge the reality of the virus.

  • Both “allies and opponents agree he has failed at the one task that could help him achieve all of his goals — confronting the pandemic with a clear strategy and consistent leadership,” The Post reported.
  • In recent weeks, as the number of deaths from the virus surpassed 146,000, the White House “has attempted to overhaul — or at least rejigger — its approach. The administration has revived news briefings led by Trump himself and presented the president with projections showing how the virus is now decimating Republican states full of Trump voters,” The Post wrote.
  • Trump had been “overly preoccupied with his own sense of grievance, beginning many conversations casting himself as the blameless victim of the crisis,” the report continued. His senior advisers’ new approach of showing Trump the data for spikes in coronavirus cases in Republican states and other “politically important states in the Midwest” seemed to “resonate, as he hewed closely to pre-scripted remarks in a trio of coronavirus briefings last week.”

“This could have been stopped. It could have been stopped quickly and easily. But for some reason, it wasn’t, and we’ll figure out what that reason was,” Trump said Thursday, seeming to simultaneously acknowledge his predicament while also trying to assign blame elsewhere.

  • In addition to anti-Trump operatives, many of Trump’s associates have claimed that the president’s “operating style” of never admitting his mistakes and his “reliance on a positive feedback loop” have dramatically hindered the efforts of the US government to mitigate the spread of the virus.

“There is quite a high likelihood where people look back and think between February and April was when Trump burned down his own presidency, and he can’t recover from it,” Ben Rhodes, a deputy national security adviser to former president Barack Obama, said. “The decisions he made then ensured he’d be in his endless cycle of covid spikes and economic disruption, because he couldn't exhibit any medium- or long-term thinking.”

Read the full report here.


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