Donald J. Trump currently faces unfair indictments that threaten the future of this republic by establishing judicial persecution as a way to keep political opponents out of office. If Trump becomes our nominee, millions of Americans will vote for him no matter what happens in court. They might see voting for him as necessary to send the message that this kind of persecution cannot be tolerated, but the record speaks for itself: Trump in no way deserves a second term.
Most of us are trying to move on from the Covid era and allow those traumatic memories to slip into the blurry past, but if we truly want to safeguard our freedoms and our republic, it’s critical we remember what really happened in 2020. President Trump played a key role in allowing us to be stripped of our freedoms and, through championing Operation Warp Speed, to be later subjected to draconian vaccine mandates during the Biden administration.
On March 16, 2020, Trump gave a press conference with Anthony Fauci and White House Covid Coordinator Deborah Birx that precipitated a cascade of supposedly state-led lockdowns. “My administration is recommending that all Americans, including the young and healthy, work to engage in schooling from home when possible, avoid gathering in groups of more than 10 people,” Trump said.
Then Anthony Fauci read the fine print on the two-page flyer of Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidance handed out at the conference and available online to every American. That fine print, which Trump may or may not have read (either way, it was his responsibility), prompted almost all states to lock down: closing businesses, churches, schools, denying social contact for seniors in long-term living, canceling weddings and funerals, and giving critical cover to inhumane hospital policies that forced people to die alone.
This set of “recommendations” was the perfect system of political CYA — one which Trump should have seen coming: The states could blame the CDC for demanding lockdowns, and the CDC could deny they ever “mandated” any lockdowns and claim it was purely the states’ decision. Showing the potency of the CDC’s lockdown guidelines, Fauci, as the Trump administration’s key media spokesman on Covid at the time, admitted that a “national stay-at-home order” is “essentially what it is.”
Fauci, Birx, and the CDC supported months more restrictions on basic liberties, long after Trump had changed his mind and demanded that America reopen. In June of 2020, he was bragging about what a great job he’d done on Covid while nursing home residents were still suffering in isolation, a third of small businesses across the nation had already been shuttered, and children as young as 2 were being forced to wear masks in the summer heat — masks Trump’s CDC demanded Americans wear. He also flip-flopped on reopening schools the following month, saying some may need to delay reopening, despite Covid not posing a substantial threat to children.
Trump himself made extended lockdowns possible by signing the CARES Act, which doled out $300 billion in paychecks for sitting at home and paid far more to businesses not to operate but keep employees on the books. Without CARES funds, the state could not afford to keep the country locked down. They would have had no choice but to begrudge people their basic rights to work, consume, and travel. Now, the profligate spending of the federal government during Trump and Biden’s terms has contributed to the inflation-straining family budgets today.
CARES also granted $400 million to encourage a Covid-conscious 2020 election via mail-in voting, leading to a number of problems with election security and integrity. His administration also shut down the cruise industry and severely curtailed international tourism after Covid was already known to be widespread within the states.
To his credit, Trump did change his mind. On May 18, he tweeted “REOPEN OUR COUNTRY.” (It appears it was then deleted.) He would later stand on a White House balcony and remove his facemask after returning from treatment for Covid. But it was too little too late, and this machine of panic and oppression he set in motion could no longer be controlled.
What’s more, once the first Covid shots became available, Trump, who had already been infected and recovered, chose to take them. His contribution to the serious misinformation campaign against the protection of natural immunity can’t be understated. Millions of people who had already had Covid followed his lead and got the jab, which proved to be the least safe, least effective modern vaccine ever to be mass-injected.
Of the three vaccines Trump’s government authorized, one, the Janssen shot, was quickly discouraged from use due to risk of dangerous blood clotting. The other two, from Moderna and Pfizer/BioNTech, began showing evidence of causing myocarditis just months after launch — and this was only one kind of adverse event that the government would admit was causally related to the vaccines. Many more adverse effects are hotly disputed today, but the government’s surveillance system, VAERS, has taken in a record-shattering number of adverse-event reports for Covid shots compared to other vaccines. Though VAERS reports are unverified, the largest percentages of reports are typically submitted by health care professionals (38 percent) and vaccine manufacturers (30 percent). The system exists to generate “safety signal detection.”
Excess mortality in 2021, the year of mass vaccination with the products Trump championed, was even greater than in 2020. If the jabs, which nearly everyone deemed “vulnerable” took early that year, “saved millions of lives,” as Trump has claimed, how can this staggering rise in mortality be explained? Overdose deaths increased by 31 percent, a tragedy inseparable from lockdown fallout, yet only accountable for a small portion of the approximately 443,000 deaths over the expected number. Even deaths coded as “Covid” were at or above 2020 levels through most of 2021. Trump was simply wrong, and the fallout from the Covid shots he was so proud for the government to produce hand-in-glove with corporations with spotty track records and non-existent ones (Spikevax was Moderna’s first commercially available product) is still being felt.
The injections’ speedy FDA authorization, which happened on Trump’s watch, and the promotion by members of his administration as “safe and effective” later paved the way for strict mandates by employers, including city and state governments and the U.S. military. The Biden administration’s attempt to force as many Americans as possible to take the experimental products wouldn’t have been possible had Trump not greenlighted Operation Warp Speed.
Trump’s biggest indictment is that what control he did have, even after dissenting from Fauci and Birx, he refused to exercise. Defenders say moves like firing Fauci, Birx, and extreme mask-promoter Redfield wouldn’t have meant much because the mass hysteria had already set in. But it would have meant everything to people hurt by Covid policies; it would have shown prudence, conviction, and a willingness to learn from his errors. He deserves to be commended for hiring Dr. Scott Atlas, who promoted reopening schools. But he also kept key Covid panic-pushers on board until he left office, and indeed said he didn’t get enough credit for Fauci’s work on Covid.
For those of us who are willing to remember Trump’s actions during 2020, pleas that Trump “wanted to reopen the country” ring hollow. We went through the Covid nightmare because Trump led us into it, empowering tyrants at all levels of government to strip us of our liberties. He has not apologized, and said “we did the right thing.” He took an oath to protect and defend the Constitution of the United States, and he broke it. Any Democrat put in the White House is sure to oppress the people to an even greater extent, but primary voters must take Trump’s pivotal mistakes during Covid into account, no matter their feelings on the indictments or the 2020 election. Trump can’t be trusted with a second term.
Originally Posted on: https://thefederalist.com/2023/08/18/trump-doesnt-deserve-a-second-term-for-how-he-mismanaged-covid/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=trump-doesnt-deserve-a-second-term-for-how-he-mismanaged-covid
[By: Georgi Boorman