Just before the coronavirus outbreak hit New York, three-term Governor Andrew Cuomo was on his way to political oblivion for his disastrous ‘no bail’ criminal justice reform measure. With criminals being released time-after time following arrests for nonviolent offenses only to continue preying on the public, Cuomo was about as popular as a poisonous rattlesnake. But that was before the COVID-19 pandemic struck New York.
Now NYC alone has 25 percent of all coronavirus cases in the US and nearly half of the COVID-19 deaths. Cuomo has been on all TV news broadcasts every day ever since New York started on its way to becoming the epicenter of the coronavirus crisis. He has looked every bit of presidential on TV.
Cuomo has been decisive. He has been careful in criticizing Trump and has given the president credit when it was due. Where the ‘no-bail’ measure made him snake poison, his handling of COVID-19 has some Democrats wanting Cuomo to be their presidential candidate in stead of Joe ‘White Obama’ Biden.
Biden has been campaigning from his cellar, telling his limited podcast audience that Trump is to blame for the spread of the coronavirus, accusing the President of having been neglectful and of ignoring the warnings by scientists. Biden says that if he were president, he would be in the “situation room” every day with the generals and the top experts on infectious diseases.
Cuomo has some things in his favor. He is 15 years younger than Biden and doesn’t have the baggage of a son named Hunter. Were he to become the choice of the Democrats, Biden would not only support Cuomo, but he would campaign for him in Black churches and community centers. That means Cuomo would get over 90 percent of the Black vote. He would get 80 percent of the Jewish vote because liberal Jews would vote for the dogcatcher from Outhouse, Texas if he were the Democratic candidate. Cuomo would pick up large chunks of the Italian-American and Catholic votes. And a lot of mothers will vote for Cuomo because he has a face only a mother could love. But Cuomo would have to defend his disastrous ‘no bail’ reform measure, a tough nut to crack.
The New York governor is far more liberal than Biden, so he won’t have any trouble getting the supporters of Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren to vote for him instead of sitting out the election with Biden as the Democratic candidate.
Trump’s popularity also has soared, but his Democratic opponent, whoever he is, will be sure to remind voters over and over again about how he backpedaled during the COVID-19 crisis. First there was that idiotic statement about coronavirus being nothing more than a “bad cold.” There was that stupid promise to reopen American businesses by Easter, making the ridiculous argument that more Americans would die by suicide if businesses remain shut than would be killed by the spreading pandemic. Trump also made the absurd accusation that the media was promoting social distancing as a way to hurt his reelection chances.
Then there was Trump’s announcement that he was considering quarantining New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut as COVID-19 “hot spots.” Actually that was Trump’s best idea, but he backpedaled on that one too. There is no telling how many New Yorkers have spread COVID-19 across the US. China was able to keep the coronavirus from spreading throughout the country by using the military to enforce a strict quarantine of Wuhan with its population of 11 million. But China is a dictatorship and its people are not protected by a Bill of Rights.
And his opponent, whether Biden or Cuomo, will have a field day reminding the voters that Dr. Fauci rebuked a number of Trump’s statements and said, “But I can’t jump in front of the microphone and push him down.” They’ll also have a field day with Fauci’s problem of disagreements, about which he said, “But when you’re dealing with the White House, sometimes you have to say things one, two, three, four times” before it sinks in.
Trump would have looked very presidential had he gone ahead with the quarantine and let those who claim that would be unconstitutional challenge him in court. He would also have looked very presidential had he grounded all civilian aircraft, including the planes of America’s airlines. Air travel has been spreading the virus across the country, so by grounding all civilian aircraft, that spread would have been slowed down.
Except for the backpedaling and some idiotic statements, Trump has handled the COVID-19 pandemic rather well. If only Trump would put his brain in gear before putting his mouth in motion. Democrats are blaming Trump for the problems experienced in applying for unemployment compensation and for and under the $2.2 Trillion coronavirus aid package. But the system is simply overwhelmed and that’s not Trump’s fault … and the Democrats damn well know it!
Cuomo replacing Biden is still a long shot. Far more significant to Trump’s reelection chances is not who he will be running against, nor how well or how poorly he handled the COVid-19 pandemic. “It’s the economy, stupid,” as Bill Clinton’s strategist James Carville coined it in 1992.
If anyone thinks that once the coronavirus crisis is over and done with, the economy will rebound instantly to where it was before the virus outbreak, they’ve been smoking too much funny tobacco. It will take months before that will happen. Some of the business closed down now will never reopen despite the $2 trillion aid package. If we are still in a recession in October, history tells us no president with the exception of Harry Truman has ever been reelected during bad economic times.
So Trump better get down on both knees and pray to God for the the economy to be on a strong rebound by September, or on January 20, 2021 even the dogcatcher from Outhouse, Texas could be the next president of the US.