It isn’t common for an “October surprise” to blindside both sides of the political aisle, but that’s pretty much what happened with President Trump catching the coronavirus. Both sides prepared for the possibility, yet they seemed to still be completely caught off guard when it actually happened. Now, Democrats and mainstream media are trying to use it as an example of the President’s irresponsibility and the Trump campaign is using it as a sign of both strength and hope. Which side is going to win this particular battle?
Any other year, I’d say the GOP has the clear upper hand. After all, this is the United States of America, the land of the free and the home of the brave. But it’s also 2020, and that means too many Americans are giving up their freedom by living in fear. But here’s the thing. At our core, we are still a brave and generally optimistic people. That means we WANT to see a bright future. We WANT the “new normal” to be very much like the good ol’ days (you remember 2019, right?) when we could work and play and go about our business without fears of a disease with an extremely high recovery rate for those who are not elderly.
As Joe Biden’s campaign highlighted in a short ad they posted on social media yesterday, this comes down to a question of masks. Do we vote to reelect a president who is willing to take his mask off even after beating COVID-19 or do we vote in a new president who has embraced mask mandates to the extreme? By their ad, we can tell the Democrats are banking on mask mandates being popular.
This is a terrible ad.
This is a very terrible ad. https://t.co/czwhsPqS5O
— JD Rucker (@JDRucker) October 6, 2020
On the surface, it makes sense for Democrats to go down this route. First and foremost, it’s the route they’ve been touting for months. Second, the President contracted the disease while personally minimizing his own mask-wearing. Third—and this point cannot be ignored—a majority of Americans want some sort of government-prompted protection from COVID-19, whether that means more mandates or even more lockdowns. That’s what the polling is showing today, at least.
They need us to live in fear. It’s not like Team Biden had a choice in the matter this late in the game; once they went down the road of fearmongering, they left themselves no potential to reverse their direction before election day. They’ve been banking on fear and the President testing positive gave them what they thought was an opportunity. Mainstream media has been bellyaching on their behalf ever since.
Once we dig beneath the surface, we see why this is not a great strategy for Joe Biden. First and foremost, they’ve been repeating the same basic coronavirus rhetoric for months and Americans have grown fatigued by the ubiquitous COVID-19 nannies everywhere. Second, the President got COVID-19 and beat it quickly. Take from that what you will, but many Americans will perceive this as a sign of strength, both physically as well as with his current stance of fighting back against Draconian mandates.
I will be leaving the great Walter Reed Medical Center today at 6:30 P.M. Feeling really good! Don’t be afraid of Covid. Don’t let it dominate your life. We have developed, under the Trump Administration, some really great drugs & knowledge. I feel better than I did 20 years ago!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) October 5, 2020
Flu season is coming up! Many people every year, sometimes over 100,000, and despite the Vaccine, die from the Flu. Are we going to close down our Country? No, we have learned to live with it, just like we are learning to live with Covid, in most populations far less lethal!!!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) October 6, 2020
As for the third reason Democrats have embraced their role as mask-nannies, the polls, there are two reasons why they’re making a mistake. The first is obvious: Polls suck. It’s been several years since polls were accurate in any way in American politics. But even if we call this a healthcare poll rather than a political poll, there’s another aspect that we’re seeing unfold before our eyes. As I mentioned before, we are generally optimistic people who want to face situations with courage. Now that the President has inadvertently made himself the ultimate example of both by getting and subsequently beating COVID-19, many who have lived the last seven months in fear have an example to follow. No, that doesn’t mean we can expect a mass reduction in mask-usage. But the President has made himself a shining example of a future without masks, without social distancing, without lockdowns, and most importantly without fear.
Democrats are scrambling to take advantage of the President catching COVID-19 by labeling him as irresponsible. But it’s backfiring. Americans are latching onto President Trump’s courage and hopefulness instead of the despair Democrats are peddling.
As we should.