Coronavirus: The White House Spin Machine, Spinning Out?

As CNN reported yesterday, the nation’s top physicians have stopped appearing on national television for interviews as the White House exerts increased control over communications during the coronavirus pandemic and refocuses its message toward reopening the economy.

The White House wants to pivot to talking about the economy, but even if that’s the focus, what does success look like? If we hit an unemployment rate of 25%–as some are predicting–is success merely a marginally lower number of Americans out of work? Politico put it best, “A falling unemployment rate and rising stock market were once Trump’s measures of success. But after a manic 3½ years, the referendum on Trump may come down to the single issue of his handling of the coronavirus pandemic.”

Why This Matters: The White House can spin a lot, but it can’t spin its calamitous coronavirus response. Just yesterday, Dr. Richard Bright, the ousted vaccine development chief, told Congress that administration officials knew that critical medical equipment would be in short supply at the start of the year, but each time he warned someone he was met with indifference. It’s death by a thousand cuts for the administration but Democrats can’t assume this will mean a loss for Trump in November, his chances of winning reelection are higher than you think.

Indigenous Knowledge: Native American beliefs and teachings on nature are proving an important coping mechanism for many during the pandemic.

Ch-ch-ch-changes: McDonald’s to end public soda fountains due to coronavirus pandemic.

Don’t Count on Herd Immunity: Health professionals and officials continue to warn that there is no easy way out of the pandemic, particularly with parts of the U.S. beginning to ease lockdowns.

Important Read: Not only are Latinos being diagnosed with COVID-19 at a higher rate, but they also have the highest unemployment rate of all racial and ethnic groups. It shouldn’t be so surprising that they are ill-prepared to afford burials for their dead.

The Good, The Bad: Coronavirus cases are going down in almost half of all states. But that’s not exactly cause to celebrate. For instance, the virus is making young people very sick.

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