Trump regime saw lives in "blue states" as expendable

Believing coronavirus wasn't going to hit red America wasn't just bad public health; it's political suicide.

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The bombshell story from Vanity Fair about the Trump administration’s early coronavirus testing plan — including buying millions of tests covertly from China, which turned out to be faulty — reveals a grotesque truth: Jared Kushner, Donald Trump’s son-in-law and adviser who was running the operation, saw coronavirus as a “blue state” problem. And that was clearly the opinion of the entire administration.

Because the early epicenters were in blue states — Washington, California, New York and others — they didn’t see it as an urgent matter. The Trump regime’s approach to the pandemic and the deaths of tens of thousands of Americans wasn’t about public health but about politics.

This is not only abominable and nazi-like; it shows how utterly stupid these people are, that they didn’t think coronavirus would explode in red state America — which was opening up too soon, allowing for rapid transmission — even as health officials warned about it.

Other reporters were quick to confirm the reporting in the Vanity Fair piece.

Maggie Haberman of The New York Times, who often has scoops about internal White House matters, tweeted that viewing coronavirius as a “blue state” problem was “a fairly widespread approach in the West Wing.”

This seemed to be an acknowledgement that she knew for a while about this, and yet, it was reported in Vanity Fair and not The New York Times. It should be noted that both Jared Kushner and his wife, Trump’s daughter, Ivanka, have clearly been sources on many of Haberman’s stories dishing dirt on others in the White House.

For me, that showed not only how the Trump administration response to the coronavirus was as disastrous as it appeared but how the media sometimes didn’t do it’s job at exposing it for the same reason that has been true since the beginning of the Trump’s presidency: Fear of losing access to the White House.

Yes, it’s important to have sources but not at the expense of withholding truths or not exposing malfeasance on the part of those sources. That is not what the media’s mandate is — that’s only the mandate of reporters determined to get scoops and clicks at any cost.

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Trump’s insane suggestion to delay the election backfires

Donald Trump tweeted yesterday suggesting the election be delayed. It seemed like impulse, once again, rather than any plan. Trump felt very small and scared after seeing reports of the calamitous drop in the GDP of 9.5% as well as the unity and dignity being shown by Democrats, even on Fox News, as media gave wall-to-wall coverage of John Lewis’s funeral.

And the pushback to his tweet was swift and intense.

Not just Democratic leaders but Republican leaders — from Mitch McConnell and Lindsey Graham to Liz Cheney and Kevin McCarthy — pushed back hard. Trump showed his weakness and desperation, and got nothing in return. The co-founder of the conservative Federalist Society — which has been an incubator for Trump’s judges and Supreme Court picks — called for him to be impeached.

Trump’s campaign was thrown into turmoil, since it had attacked Joe Biden as a conspiracy theorist for suggesting Trump would try to delay the election weeks ago, only to now look ludicrous — and making Biden seem completely on the mark. Even conservative pundits, Trump loyalists, came out with a lashing against Trump.

Trump tried to push his idea further on Twitter later in the day, and then kind of made a mess of it at a White House coronavirus briefing, where he again attacked mail-in voting.

I know that many are worried he’s trying to attack the legitimacy of the election and/or challenge it and stay in office should he lose. I really have less concerns about those things. A portion of Trump’s base — most of it — will never accept an election outcome in which he loses at this point, no matter what he says. So that’s going to happen anyway — but the majority will certainly see the election as legitimate. And I know there have been many worst case scenarios in the media — and I wrote about them — and yes, we should keep an eye on them.

But I’m actually glad all of this came out now, rather than later. Trump forced the GOP leaders’ hand, and we got them out on the record three months before the election. The same goes for right-wing columnists and other pundits. This probably cost Trump in the polls even further, as he sees his support eroding. It was a stunning backlash — and, again, it showed how fearful and desperate he is.

We now know that Trump, too, believes the polls — because his campaign has internal polls as well — and that right now, Joe Biden is winning in all the places that matter. Let’s work hard and drive it home.