COVID-19’s Impact on Upcoming Elections

By: Sonali Mudunuri

With Bernie Sanders –– a widely supported progressive Democrat hailing from Vermont –– ending his 2020 presidential candidacy just recently on April 8th, former Vice President and moderate Joe Biden will be facing off against current president, Donald J. Trump, in the upcoming election. Biden has currently received endorsements from the likes of former candidates Andrew Yang, Pete Buttigieg, Amy Klobuchar, Elizabeth Warren, Bernie Sanders, and former President Barack Obama; it appears the Democrats are ready to rally behind him as the message “vote blue no matter who” has risen in popularity among the party. However, their upcoming statements and political moves have been influenced heavily by the driving factor forcing us all to stay at home, wash our hands frequently, and maintain a six-foot distance from strangers; the coronavirus.

 As COVID-19 death tolls rise higher and higher every day, Biden has begun to war with Trump over relations with China, from which the disease originated. Trump has recently faced enormous backlash for not only the flippant way he discusses the virus but how he has been shown to prioritize China’s safety over America’s. In a recent tweet, Biden attacked Trump for “[leaving] America exposed and vulnerable to this pandemic,” noting that warnings of health experts and intelligence agencies were ignored under the current leadership. Another development from American Bridge details how Trump apparently shipped “lifesaving medical equipment to China”, even as shortages emerged in U.S. resources. Finally, Biden criticized Trump for removing the strong CDC presence in Beijing and for eliminating a program called ‘Predict’ (which he worked on with former President Barack Obama), which would provide early warnings for worldwide outbreaks. 

With Trump losing support on both sides of the political spectrum, many say that Joe Biden is the answer, or at least, a lesser evil who will be able to more effectively combat the virus and provide a semblance of safety and reassurance to the American people. At any rate, everyone is urged to cast their vote when November elections come around, and please, stay safe. 

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