“The Coronavirus is very much under control in the USA… the Stock Market starting to look very good to me!”

President Donald Trump  (February 24, 2020)

When the 2020 election results became evident, Donald Trump orchestrated the “big lie” he actually won reelection and Joe Biden’s victory was stolen, the result of massive voter fraud.  The repercussions of his baseless campaign have been far reaching, potentially threating our democracy and the integrity of one of its most important underpinnings, free and fair elections. 

Without any credible evidence of election fraud and fed by the incessant drumbeats from right-wing media, far-fetched conspiracy theories, and Republican politicians trying to avoid Trump’s wrath and threats to campaign against them in future primaries, his partisan followers were duped into donating millions indirectly to Trump personally through his “Stop the Steal” fundraiser and participating in the January 6th insurrection and assault on the U.S. Capitol … which Trump cheered on from the security of the Oval Office.

While it may take years for the nation to heal form his election “big lie”, far more destructive were the months of bigger and more consequential lies and misinformation he fed the American people concerning the threat posed by the COVID-19 virus. 

From early 2020, although fully aware of how deadly COVID could become, Trump focus was on how the economy might be affected if the truth were publicly known and how that might affect his prospects for reelection rather than on his responsibility to protect and save American lives.

He stonewalled and often mocked many of his medical advisors, chose to ignore science and medical-based evidence, refused to encourage mask-wearing and social-distancing programs which might have mitigated the virus’ lethal spread, hyped a series of quack remedies and told Americans, “It’s going to disappear. One day, it’s like a miracle, it will disappear.” As the death toll began to soar, when asked about the job he was doing Trump responded, “I’d rate it a ten”.

With Trump out of office, some who served on his White House COVID task force have begun to speak out, most recently his Coronavirus Response Coordinator Dr. Deborah Brix, in a seemingly mea culpa interview to help resurrect her tarnished reputation, acknowledged while 100,000 deaths could be anticipated from the pandemic’s original surge, as many as 80% of American deaths, presently just shy of 565,000, could have been mitigated.

While Donald Trump may believe his efforts rate a ten, and despite stating, “I don’t take responsibility at all,” for his words, actions or decisions … as with the consequences resulting from his groundless claims of election fraud … he bears sole and ultimate responsibility for the subsequent results of his bigger and more consequential COVID lies, the potentially unnecessary deaths of as many as 450,000 or more Americans. 

While our Republic can and will heal form his irresponsible post-election behavior, the avoidable lives of those lost to COVID can never be reclaimed while those of their surviving families and friends have been forever and profoundly changed because Trump wouldn’t tell the truth!