Trump has pushed ahead with in-person rallies despite recently testing positive for the coronavirus.
On Monday, Donald Trump attended his first-in person campaign event since testing positive for coronavirus on October 1. The rally, at Orlando Sanford International Airport in Florida, came as the state's case count continues to rise, with the two-week average up 7% since last week.
Already Republicans' refusal to take basic safety precautions has complicated the confirmation proceedings for Trump's Supreme Court nominee Amy Coney Barrett and led to widespread outcry from public health experts, while sowing confusion about how America's most powerful elected officials could be so brazen in their disregard for the health of the nation.
On Monday, Dr. Anthony Fauci told CNN that Trump's planned continuation of rallies was "asking for trouble".
"Now is an even worse time to do that" he said. "When you look at what’s going on in the United States, it's really very troublesome. It's going in the wrong direction right now... If there's anything we should be doing, it's doubling down on the public health measures that we’ve been talking about for so long."
Fauci also described the unveiling of Barrett as Trump's Supreme Court nominee at the White House Rose Garden as a
"superspreader" event after multiple attendees tested positive.
Prior to his infection, Trump routinely criticized Joe Biden for his refusal to hold the type of rally Fauci warned of on CNN this week. Trump claimed that Biden was "hiding in his basement" despite the numerous public appearances and fundraising events that Biden's team organized while observing the Center for Disease Control and Prevention's safety guidelines.
The Trump campaign's disregard for these very same protocols was on display in Wisconsin this week, where Eric Trump held a maskless fundraiser for his father.
"I am in Wisconsin as we speak! This was today, a sleepy Monday, at Noon! We are stronger than we were in 2016. The media is both lazy and intellectually dishonest - every second yard has a Trump sign. Don’t believe the polls - they were wrong in ‘16 and will be wrong again." Eric Trump tweeted on Monday afternoon.
Trump's resumption of events that could serve as super-spreaders began on the White House lawn this Sunday, where several hundred supporters — many of whom weren't wearing masks — packed together to see the president in his first public event since falling ill.
"It's going to disappear. It is disappearing," Trump told the closely gathered group after removing his mask.
As Trump resumes in-person gatherings, Joe Biden has maintained his lead in the polls while abiding by the safety measures recommended by the CDC. This week, Biden traveled to Ohio where he delivered a speech slamming Trump on trade, while Kamala Harris remained in Washington to participate in Barrett's confirmation proceedings.
Addressing auto workers at UAW Local 14, Biden attacked his opponent over the administrations catastrophic inaction on the coronavirus.
"Trump panicked. His reckless personal conduct since his diagnosis has been unconscionable," Biden said.
"I don't respect people based on whether they in a mansion. I don't judge them whether they're based on whether they belong to a country club. You and I measure people by the strength of their character."
Published with permission of The American Independent Foundation.