Democrats have been smirking as the once booming economy is ravaged by coronavirus. They are nakedly hoping it will erase President Donald Trump’s biggest advantage for reelection, but economic collapse may not be a silver bullet for their victory.
More American voters think he is better suited to create jobs than presumed Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden, according to a new Reuters and Ipsos poll released Tuesday.
According to the poll, 43 percent of U.S. adults said Trump is better suited to create jobs while 32 percent trust Biden. Trump boasts a 13-point advantage over Biden, a 7 point increase from the poll conducted in mid-April, that showed Trump with a 6 point lead over Biden.
The opinion poll conducted on Monday and Tuesday found that 43% of registered voters said they would support Biden in the Nov. 3 presidential election, while 41% said they would back Trump.
Biden’s popular support plummeted 6 percent since the last survey, meaning both candidates are in a dead heat. His support has dropped by 8 points since the April 15 to 21 survey.
The poll surveyed 1,215 U.S. adults on May 4 and May 5 and has a margin of error of plus or minus 3 percentage points.
The former vice president has been stuck in his basement in Delaware, a very unappealing venue from which to run a presidential campaign. The frail, elderly and often confused 78-year-old candidate falls in the cohort of high risk individuals who have been hardest hit by COVID-19 and need to shelter in place.
Trump, by contrast, holds a commanding position as leader of the U.S. pandemic response. His robust presence at White House task force briefings regularly drew millions of viewers and sky-high ratings.
He is currently facing political headwinds from Democrats who generally oppose reopening the economy, fearing the virus death toll will resurge. More than 1.2 million Americans are infected by the virus and at least 71,078 have died.
Democrats have compared Trump’s attitude to the musical soundtrack “Live and Let Die,” written by Paul McCartney and performed by Guns ‘N Roses. It was playing in the background as the president toured an N95 mask manufacturing plant in Phoenix on Tuesday.
The coronavirus task force will keep working “indefinitely,” he tweeted Wednesday, even though some members may be replaced. Its focus will shift toward reopening the U.S. economy, he noted.
The president also acknowledged that more people could die as the country reopens in an ABC News interview.
“It’s possible there will be some, because you won’t be locked into an apartment or a house, or whatever it is,” he said.
“But at the same time, we’re going to practice social distancing. We’re going to be washing hands. We’re going to be doing a lot of the things that we have learned to do over the last period of time,” he noted optimistically.
“I don’t want to be Mr. Gloom and Doom,” he said. “It’s a very bad subject. I’m not looking to tell the American people, when nobody really knows what’s happening yet, oh, this is going to be so tragic.”
“I want to be, aside from everything else — and I’m going to use a term, and some people love it and some people hate it, but I love it — I want to be a cheerleader for our country,” he said.
Around two-dozen states are in the process of lifting mandated business closures. Some are allowing residents to return to restaurants, fitness centers, hair salons, and retail stores, as long as they comply with social distancing guidelines. Other states have initiated multiphase reopenings, like Arizona, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, and Texas.