Democrats, Republicans and the Coronavirus: Coming Out on Top During a Time of Crisis

The Coronavirus Wreaks Havoc on the Political Front

Jacob Self, Writer

An extremely divided, diverse and self-destructive field of Democratic presidential candidates this year saw their endless media coverage brought to a permanent halt when the coronavirus began spreading exponentially across the world.

The virus continues to wreak political, economic and social havoc in every nation it touches, kill hundreds of thousands of people and fill hospitals past capacity.

With the 78-year-old former Vice President Joe Biden remaining as the final primary candidate in the field after Bernie Sander’s quiet (and life-threateningly late) withdrawal, the Democratic Party and most left-leaning media sources have fallen into line behind Biden and are preparing for a November election showdown with President Trump.

The global pandemic, however, has thrown quite the wrench into this plan.

With the inability to host meaningful political rallies, a 24/7 news cycle focused on the coronavirus, and a nation in which President Trump has seen his highest approval ratings to date, Biden and his supporters have a difficult path in front of them.

Throughout United States history, the most re-elected presidents were those who guided the country through a time of crisis, even if they did so poorly.

Lyndon B. Johnson hit just about 50 percent during the tumultuous year of 1968, Franklin D. Roosevelt’s approval ratings during World War II and the Great Depression were so high that he was elected four times, and after 9/11 George W. Bush boasted an approval rating of just above 80 percent.

Donald Trump, too, has benefited from this “wartime” support from many Americans. With an approval rating ranging from 48-52 percent depending on which poll is taken into consideration, most pollsters would say that Trump’s current approval rating is higher than Obama’s before the latter went on to win re-election.

This newfound popular support of Donald Trump, as well as the problems of organizing virus-proof voting booths, on top of a collapsing economy and record-low fundraising for the DNC, has led to many doubts over what previously seemed to be an easy and assured victory against President Trump.

While it remains to be seen what kind of support and unity Biden can manage to rally in this time of crisis, an overwhelming number of factors seem to have come into play against his campaign.