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Donald Trump, Joe Biden campaigns use coronavirus pandemic to shape upcoming presidential election

News Agencies | Updated on: 7 July 2020, 13:09 IST

In the run-up to the presidential election scheduled for November, Donald Trump and Joe Biden campaigns are using the coronavirus pandemic to shape the election results.

While the spike in coronavirus cases is helping the Democratic nominee in portraying Trump as a person who is concerned with only his political standing, the Republican campaigners are trying to re-shape their leader's response to the virus.

Facing Trump's controversial statements on the virus in the past like -- lungs could be cleaned of coronavirus with disinfectants -- the advisors are now reportedly crafting messages on economic recovery, The Washington Post reported.

"They are (the White House officials) of the belief that people will get over it or if we stop highlighting it, the base will move on and the public will learn to accept 50,000 to 100,000 new cases a day," The newspaper quoted a former administration official in touch with the campaign as saying.

It has been reported that some close to Trump, including Republican senators and House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.), have urged him to focus his speeches on blaming China for the pandemic and simultaneously emphasise the administration's successes, including preventing a widely feared ventilator shortage and increasing the country's testing capacity to 500,000 tests a day.

Meanwhile, Biden has continued to take advantage of Trump's lack of proper response to the pandemic.

"Vice President Biden has been laser-focused on the rising risk to the American people presented by this pandemic...You can almost imagine them side by side -- Trump's leadership and Biden's leadership... Trump has no plan for tomorrow, no plan for a week from now, so there is absolutely no plan for the fall, and that is what encapsulates the whole arc of that contrast," Biden campaign advisor Ariana Berengaut was quoted as saying.

According to The Washington Post's average of polls, Biden led Trump by 11 points in June, up from an eight-point lead in May and a six-to seven-point lead between February and April.

"Trump is increasingly defined in voters' minds by his failing response to the coronavirus crisis, and virtually every action and position he has taken have been wildly out of sync with where the public is at on what should be done. Biden now has a remarkable opportunity to contrast himself with this failure of leadership that a large majority of voters see so clearly," Democratic pollster Geoff Garin was quoted as saying. 


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First published: 7 July 2020, 13:09 IST