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Trump on Covid-19: “I take complete accountability. It’s now not my fault.”

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President Donald Trump appeared poised to take accountability for his failure on Covid-19 at Thursday’s presidential debate — after which he didn’t.

“I take complete accountability,” Trump stated. He straight away persevered: “It’s now not my fault it got here right here. It’s China’s fault.”

It’s a large contradiction, nevertheless it’s emblematic of Trump’s option to the coronavirus. Time and time once more, Trump has attempted to downplay the coronavirus and dodge accountability, all whilst failing to embody the type of messaging and coverage way that mavens suggest.

Requested about screw ups on checking out early on, Trump stated in March, “I don’t take accountability in any respect.” Requested in regards to the 1,000 Covid-19 deaths an afternoon in america on the time, Trump stated in July, “It’s what it’s.”

In the meantime, Trump has intentionally downplayed the pandemic, demanded states reopen too briefly, punted issues of checking out and tracing all the way down to native and state governments with extra restricted assets than the government, mocked mask, and attempted to politicize public well being establishments as an alternative of letting science lead the reaction.

The end result: The united states is faring a lot worse than lots of its advanced friends. America is within the best 15 p.c amongst advanced nations for showed Covid-19 deaths, and has virtually six occasions the demise charge because the median advanced country. If america had the similar demise charge as, as an example, Canada, just about 140,000 extra American citizens would most likely be alive these days.

Many mavens have laid this failure on Trump. “It starts in some ways, and you want to argue it leads to some ways, with the Trump management,” Ashish Jha, the college director of the Harvard World Well being Institute, prior to now advised me. “If George W. Bush have been president, if John McCain have been president, if Mitt Romney have been president, this could have seemed very other.”

For extra on Trump’s screw ups on Covid-19, learn Vox’s complete explainer.

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