The COVID-19 pandemic is raging with over 1 million new cases in less than a week. But according to Republicans, everything they’re doing is perfect.
The Washington Post reported Sunday that cited 50-year-old doctor who ran for office in northeastern Wisconsin this year.
Against an opponent who refused to wear a mask and was eagerly shaking hands with people, Kristin Lyerly talked to people through screen doors, promising that she would follow the science.
“My whole campaign was about ‘covid, covid, covid,’” the Post cited Lyerly. “And when I talked to people through their storm doors, they would say they wanted responsible covid management.”
But when votes were counted they went with the non-doctor Republican. She’s not the only one. In states where the virus is spiking the most, Trump won.
Masks somehow became a political debate as conservatives had fights with businesses over trying to mandate wearing face coverings to minimize the virus’s respiratory spread. The GOP’s “freedom” to refuse to wear masks became a point of pride. One ER nurse on Twitter told a story about people dying from the coronavirus, still maintaining that the virus was fake, even as it was killing them.
“In the weeks ahead, we will see hospitals overwhelmed,” the Post cited former Trump administration FDA chief Scott Gottlieb. He wanted a national mask mandate, so he wasn’t long for the Trump White House.
In the past, when hospitals see spikes, about three to four weeks later, there’s a spike in deaths.
COVID-19 cases are up 180 percent in Iowa, but Trump held packed rallies, won the state, and saved Sen. Joni Ernst (R-IA) from falling.
Republican Gov. Kim Reynolds called the election “a validation of our balanced response to covid-19, one that is mindful of both public health and economic health.”
It’s unclear how Reynolds or any Republican can square that with 1 million new cases, hospitals at capacity, and the death rate weeks away from another spike.
In Montana, Democratic candidate Mike Cooney told voters that the economy wouldn’t recover if the state didn’t stay healthy. Republican Greg Gianforte opposed the mask mandate and blamed lockdowns for 150,000 Montanans being out of work. Still, it will be difficult for Gianforte to keep the state’s economy afloat if hospitals are full and consumers die. Businesses can reopen all they want, but those jobs will still be lost if there aren’t people there to support the business.
Appeals from Democrat to social distance and wear masks have been ignored by many Americans. Ashok Rai, the CEO of Prevea Health in Wisconsin, said that messages in Green Bay have been cast aside by citizens. They’ve begged for changes and responsible behavior, but residents in his city don’t care.
Wisconsin Democratic Chair Ben Wikler said that his party assumed that Americans would pick candidates who cared about keeping them alive and healthy.
“The polling is very clear that voters support mask mandates and social distancing,” he said. “But a lot of voters turned out who aren’t answering polls.”
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) is still refusing to deal with House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) on another recovery bill. Instead, he only supports a “skinny” bill that neglects the financial constraints that states and cities are suffering from.
There’s now a renewed fear that the stock market is about to fall again as cases soar. Ironically, there’s nothing those newly elected Republican officials can do to stop it. Either America will face the economic pain of another lockdown or the slow bleed will persist as millions of Americans continue to stay inside and away from the public.