Trump Fine With Letting Countless Americans Die From COVID-19 So He Can Pretend He’s Getting a Second Term

Trump Fine With Letting Countless Americans Die From COVID-19 So He Can Pretend He’s Getting a Second Term
If there weren’t any real-life consequences to the president of the United States refusing to accept the results of the 2020 election and carrying on as though he’s totally going to to have a second term despite unequivocally losing to his opponent, the whole thing would be real gas. A 74-year-old man-child tweeting “I WON!” when he definitely didn’t and effectively throwing himself on the floor of the Oval Office screaming “I’m not going! No! You can’t make me!”? That’s pretty hilarious. Except, inconveniently, there are consequences. There’s the whole undermining of democracy thing, which is expected in dictatorships that hold sham elections but not the United States. There’s the national security factor, which Trump is putting at grave risk. And, of course, there’s the matter of the COVID-19 pandemic, which is getting worse and not better, and will needlessly kill an untold number of Americans because Donald Trump is a sociopath who can’t say the words “I lost.”

Speaking to the Daily Beast, multiple members of the Trump administration’s own coronavirus task force have said the president’s refusal to accept reality will very likely prolong the pandemic and result in more deaths, as Trump is not just waging pointless legal battles but is blocking customary transition work necessary to allow the next administration to hit the ground running on January 21, 2021.

Officials in the Trump administration working the COVID vaccine process, particularly those working on Operation Warp Speed, have been unable to communicate with Biden’s new COVID-19 task force about what plans they already have in place for distribution. Without close coordination on those topics, current officials say, Biden’s team could face significant delays in getting the vaccine out to the American people. “The vaccine distribution planning takes time,” said one senior health official. “And Operation Warp Speed has built up a huge database that is guiding their decisions about how best to roll out the vaccine. It’s essential Biden’s camp has access to this information so that when a vaccine does become available it can get out to the public quickly.”

With officials still trying to finalize a cohesive, streamlined operation for who gets the vaccine first and when, there is ample need for the outgoing and incoming administrations to be on the same page. Instead, they’re not even talking…. According to multiple individuals familiar with the matter, Biden’s COVID-19 task force has made outreach to governors a top priority. The goal, those sources said, is to create lines of communication with state and local leaders not only to assess what they need to fight the current wave of the coronavirus but also to ensure their constituents have access to a vaccine. But because Biden’s task force has been cut out of the Trump administration’s conversations, and data gathering as it relates to the vaccine, its members will face additional hurdles in ensuring it has what it needs to roll out a nationwide distribution campaign.

Not only is Trump making the pandemic worse by refusing to cooperate with Biden, but with his attention focused on fighting a clearly losing battle, he’s left the federal government’s COVID-19 oversight to Scott Atlas, the guy who thinks we should do nothing to stop the virus and go for “herd immunity,” a strategy that could require more than 2 million Americans die from it. This comes as the U.S. continues to set new records for daily infections—153,400 new cases on Thursday alone—with more Americans currently hospitalized with the virus than at any point since the pandemic started. In one Montana county, there aren‘t any hospital beds left. In North Dakota, the situation is so bad that COVID-positive nurses are treating patients.

Meanwhile, Donald Trump’s selfish stupidity has caused a whopping 10% of the people who are responsible for protecting him to contract COVID-19 or come into close contact with someone who has coronavirus, per the Washington Post:

More than 130 Secret Service officers who help protect the White House and the president when he travels have recently been ordered to isolate or quarantine because they tested positive for the coronavirus or had close contact with infected co-workers, according to three people familiar with agency staffing. The spread of the coronavirus—which has sidelined roughly 10 percent of the agency’s core security team—is believed to be partly linked to a series of campaign rallies that President Trump held in the weeks before the Nov. 3 election, according to the people, who, like others interviewed for this report, spoke on the condition of anonymity to describe the situation.

Trump went on a travel blitz in the final stretch of the campaign, making five campaign stops on each of the last two days. On Nov. 2, Trump’s campaign schedule required five separate groups of Secret Service officers — each numbering 20 to several dozen—to travel to Fayetteville, N.C.; Scranton, Pa.; Traverse City and Grand Rapids, Mich.; and Kenosha, Wis.; to screen spectators and secure the perimeter around the president’s events…. The agency is also examining whether some portion of the current infections are not travel-related, one government official said, but instead trace back to the site where many Secret Service officers report for duty each day: the White House. White House staff largely eschew wearing masks, despite public health guidelines that they help contain the spread of the virus, and some Secret Service officers on duty at the complex have also been seen without them.

And while Trump is obviously making a very bad situation significantly worse, once he’s out of the picture Biden will still have anti-science, anti-facts officials to deal with. According to Politico, nearly every one of the country’s Republican governors have said they’ll reject the president-elect’s call to impose mask mandates. And then there are people like Georgia’s Marjorie Taylor Greene:

Any form of logic will probably be lost on her, but as former CDC director Dr. Tom Frieden, told the Daily Beast: “It’s a really difficult virus to fight. And if you’re not organized, you don’t fight effectively, you don’t communicate effectively and you don’t do things that are proven to work, it’s impossible,” Frieden said. “So I would hope that in the coming two months we see some improvement in management of the virus, because this is a really dangerous time. Unless we change our plans for Thanksgiving, we’re not going to have a very Merry Christmas.”

More Great Stories From Vanity Fair

— The 10 Moments When Trump Lost the 2020 Election
— Trump’s Plans to Barricade Himself in the Oval Office
— Joe Biden’s Campaign Manager Told the Political Future—And Was Right
— Republicans Are Standing by Trump, Even as the World Moves On
— A Vigil With Donald Trump’s Ghosts
— Kayleigh McEnany: White House Press Secretary and Donald Trump’s Election Cheerleader
— Cover Story: AOC’s Next Four Years
— From the Archive: Presidential Club Rules and Why Trump Will Be Left Out of the Fraternity

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