How successful handling of coronavirus crisis helps Trump defeat a surging Biden in 2020 election!  

April 15, 2020 - 16:33

A senior advisor to former President Bill Clinton says that defeating COVID-19 outbreak and its negative impacts on economy can gift Donald Trump a new chance to remain in power till 2024 yearend but failing to do so will enable a surging Joe Biden to walk on the path towards the White House.

Douglas Schoen, who served as an adviser to President Bill Clinton and as a consultant to the campaign of Mayor Michael Bloomberg, wrote a newly-published analytic report in the Hill that with Bernie Sanders ending his campaign, the path is clear for a general election battle between Joe Biden, the presumptive Democratic nominee, and President Trump. As the race stands, Biden holds a strong statistical advantage over Trump in many recent general election polls.

Schoen, whose latest book is “Collapse: A World in Crisis and the Urgency of American Leadership, added that Biden has an advantage of 6 points over Trump, leading by 49 percent to 43 percent in a general election matchup, according to Real Clear Politics. Biden has an advantage of 8 points over Trump, leading by 49 percent to 41 percent, according to a Quinnipiac University poll. Though Biden leads in several critical swing states that went for Trump in 2016, some of these states indeed remain toss-ups as the campaign season rolls on.

In Florida, a critical swing state that went for Trump in 2016, Biden leads by 6 points at 46 percent to 40 percent, a University of North Florida poll found. The survey also shows a majority of Florida voters at 53 percent disapprove of how Trump is handling the coronavirus, while only 46 percent approve. In Michigan, a swing state that also went for Trump in 2016, Biden leads the president by only 3 points at 48 percent to 45 percent, according to a Public Policy Polling survey.

In Wisconsin, a state that Trump won by less than 1 point, Biden also leads by 3 points at 48 percent to 45 percent, a Marquette Law School survey finds. However, in Pennsylvania, where Trump won by a razor-thin margin in 2016, the president has an advantage of 2 points over Biden at 46 percent to 44 percent, according to a Baldwin Wallace University, Ohio Northern University, Oakland University poll. The survey also shows a notable 9 percent of respondents have yet to make up their minds.

Though Biden holds a considerable lead in most general election polls, many of the states that will decide the outcome of 2020 remain in play, and it is clear that the former vice president faces obstacles that will make his path to the White House a challenge. Biden clinched the Democratic nomination by positioning himself as a steady and tested leader with the experience to lead during a national crisis. This contrasted with Sanders, who ran on the promise of a revolution and the implementation of sweeping programs such as Medicare for All. While Sanders was propelled by enthusiasm, Biden still faces a serious deficit of enthusiasm.

As Biden works to build a diverse coalition of voters, he faces the challenge of building excitement for his candidacy within the party, which will involve appealing to Sanders supporters and the progressive wing. This presents a great obstacle for Biden as a traditional retail politician, given that he is unable to campaign in person. In response to the effects of the coronavirus on the economy, and in what is clearly an attempt to reach Sanders supporters, Biden proposed lowering the age of eligibility for Medicare to 60, a proposal which Sanders supporters are already decrying as not going far enough.

However, arguably the most important and immediate way that Biden can generate enthusiasm within the party will be with the selection of his running mate. Biden has already committed to picking a woman and reportedly told donors that his team has discussed naming a choice ahead of the Democratic convention in August. Given that Biden would be the oldest American president if elected and is running in the midst of a global pandemic, the decision regarding his running mate is critically important and will be a balancing act of choosing someone who can motivate an increasingly diverse party and who is also ready to be president in an instant.

But given the crisis and unprecedented circumstances, Biden may take a backseat to how Trump is handling the coronavirus. Given the public health emergency, financial crash, and impending depression, Trump is facing one of the greatest challenges of any modern-day president that will also make or break his chances for reelection. His approval rating last month reached 48 percent, according to a Washington Post poll, but his approval rating is now at 43 percent, according to a recent Morning Consult poll. The drop is likely a result of his uneven response, coupled with the significant toll the coronavirus is taking on the public and the economy, as well as the uncertainty over the length of the lockdowns.

The country is in uncharted waters and faces an unprecedented degree of peril. Levels of concern are high, and Americans are looking to their elected officials, particularly in the federal government, for leadership and direction now more than ever. If Trump is able to adeptly navigate this crisis from a communications standpoint while setting the economy on a noticeable path toward recovery, it is likely that no Democratic candidate, not even a surging Biden, would be able to defeat him this fall.

Last week, the Vermont senator and democratic socialist Bernie Sanders suspended his campaign for president, saying he couldn’t see a path to the nomination. Sanders, who reshaped American politics with his youth-led movement for sweeping social change, was Biden’s last rival in the field, which leaves the former vice-president, under Barack Obama, as the de facto Democratic candidate to challenge Trump.

The presidential vote is due to take place on 3 November. The date is set by federal law and Donald Trump has no power to delay it alone. That would require legislation enacted by Congress and signed by the president.

The number of coronavirus cases in the U.S. passed 556,000 on Sunday, April 12, a day when millions of Americans were forced to observe the Easter holiday in the shadow of the pandemic.

The country has recorded at least 22,073 deaths and 556,044 cases so far during the pandemic, according to data from Johns Hopkins University.

All 50 states are under a federal disaster declaration for the first time in U.S. history.

MJ

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