Mixed Messages From Washington as Trump’s Numbers Plunge
Author: Greg Valliere
April 23, 2020
AMERICANS WANT A CLEAR message from Washington, but there was nothing but confusion yesterday . . .
PRESIDENT TRUMP SAID the coronavirus might be gone by late summer, while Dr. Anthony Fauci said “we will have coronavirus in the fall. I am convinced of that.”
TRUMP SAID the head of the Centers for Disease Control was misquoted in the Washington Post, which reported that Dr. Robert Redfield believes a second wave this winter could be worse than the first. “I’m accurately quoted in the Post,” Redfield said, as Trump glowered.
AFTER URGING THE “LIBERATION” OF STATES that had tough lockdown policies, Trump told Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp that he “strongly disagrees” with Kemp’s partial re-opening, which will begin tomorrow. A strong Trump supporter, Kemp got thrown under the bus; Trump knows polls show the public doesn’t want the economy re-opened prematurely.
TRUMP INSISTED THAT GOVERNORS already have enough testing equipment, and the governors insisted that they do not. Is massive testing necessary? No one seems to agree.
THE GOVERNMENT’S TOP VIRUS EXPERT, Dr. Rick Bright, was transferred — because, he said, he dismissed the effectiveness of drugs Trump has been promoting. “Rushing blindly towards unproven drugs can be disastrous and result in countless more deaths,” Bright said. “I never heard of him,” Trump declared.
SENATE MAJORITY LEADER MITCH McCONNELL SAID states may have to go bankrupt, horrifying lawmakers in both parties, who concede that a massive aid package for state and local governments will be necessary this summer.
THESE DIZZYING DEVELOPMENTS will confuse the public, which already has a bad case of cabin fever. The recipient of this public frustration will be Trump, whose numbers continue to slide. He now clearly trails Joe Biden in key states like Michigan and Pennsylvania, and Trump’s job rating was at is at 44% positive, 55% negative in yesterday’s Rasmussen poll.
BOTTOM LINE: The markets are happy to see that much of America will be opened up in May, but there will be more infections. It’s a risky bet, as Fauci and Dr. Deborah Birx are cautioning. The sniping and confusion in Washington will be annoying background noise, but the markets can handle that.
TRUMP HAS TO STAY ON MESSAGE, and he most definitely did not yesterday — he holds grudges, blames others and fires people, all while bragging about his performance. Whether Trump has the temperament for this crisis is a major issue heading into the election.
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