Viewpoints: COVID Lessons On Preparations For Election Season
Opinion writers weigh in on how the country needs to prepare for the 2020 vote.
The Washington Post:
The Coronavirus Is Infecting Our Entire Election
It’s sobering to recall that only six months ago, it looked highly plausible that President Trump could run for reelection largely on the good economy (which he mostly inherited) with no serious crises to contend with. Even after the coronavirus began taking hold, that still looked like a real possibility, as the virus appeared confined to just a few mostly blue-leaning and urban areas. But now, with the coronavirus again surging across different parts of the country, both the seriousness of the crisis and its shifting political geography are ensuring that it is infecting the 2020 election on just about every level. A new report from the moderate Democratic group Third Way underscores the point: It finds that coronavirus cases are now swelling in the 42 most competitive Democratic-controlled House districts that will determine which party controls the lower chamber next year. (Greg Sargent, 7/20)
The Wall Street Journal:
New York’s Mail-Vote Disaster
After primary night in New York, June 23, Democratic Rep. Carolyn Maloney held a 648 vote lead over progressive challenger Suraj Patel. Almost a month later the winner in the 12th District, which covers eastern Manhattan and parts of Brooklyn and Queens, remains unknown. It’s a dark omen for November. (7/20)
The Washington Post:
D.C.’s Vote-By-Mail Process Backfired In The Primaries. Let’s Hope It Gets It Right By November.
D.C. Mayor Muriel E. Bowser (D) recently posted on social media, “Our power is in peace, in our voices, and in the ballot box.” That’s a fine sentiment, but one that rings hollow after a disastrous primary that saw thousands of poor and elderly D.C. residents disenfranchised because of a hasty and poorly planned decision to move to a mostly vote-by-mail election. Thousands of D.C. residents who requested an absentee ballot were never sent one. (Trevor M. Stanley, 7/17)
Chicago Sun Times:
RNC Ramps Up Free Test For Convention Attendees
With COVID-19 cases spiking in Florida, Republican convention goers will have to take an “in-home” COVID-19 test before they depart for Jacksonville, paid for by the Republican National Committee, the Chicago Sun-Times has learned. Convention attendees will have to agree to be tested twice — at home and when they get to Florida. This comes as President Donald Trump — who moved the main convention venue to Florida from North Carolina to escape coronavirus pandemic restrictions — is confronted with the reality that Florida COVID-19 cases are surging at some 10,000-a-day. ...Still, Trump’s convention will not mandate masks. The memo said, when it comes to masks, “We will follow the local and state health guidelines in place at the time of the convention.” (Lynn Sweet, 7/20)
Trump's Pandemic Reversals Betray Anxiety About November Election Hopes
Donald Trump's sudden rediscovery of the pandemic, his endorsement of masks and the return of his notorious briefings suggest a belated realization that public scorn over his denial-plagued leadership could end his presidency. Trump suggested Monday that "many people say" that wearing a mask to prevent the spread of the disease is patriotic, in a tweet using ambiguous language that hinted at his discomfort over the reversal. The grudging move followed weeks of the President politicizing and undermining government advice on face coverings. Once he shared a tweet mocking his Democratic rival Joe Biden for wearing one. (Stephen Collinson, 7/21)