A sector of your team triggers a quarantine. The country has a record of 140,000 infections a day.
The president-elect of the United States, Joe Biden, faces a decision different from that of any other incoming president: to support or not a national quarantine in the short term to finally stop a pandemic that is worsening by the day. Yesterday there was a new record of 184,000 cases of Covid-19, with a daily average in the last week of 140,000.
Donald Trump, who always minimized the health crisis, has already said that he will not apply drastic measures in the remainder of his government. “We are not going to confinement, I will not go, this government will not go to a closure of activities,” he said on Friday.
Biden, meanwhile, avoids a blunt answer on the subject, but admits that he is concerned. “I am alarmed by the increase in reported Covid-19 infections, hospitalizations and deaths,” he tweeted this Saturday. “This crisis requires a solid and immediate federal response that has unfortunately been lacking,” he added in direct criticism of Trump’s health policy.
“I am the president-elect, but I will not be president until next year. The Covid-19 does not respect dates on the calendar, it is accelerating right now “, said Biden, before demanding” urgent action today, now, by the current administration. “
The United States is approaching 11 million coronavirus infections, and has had more than 245,000 deaths. But the problem does not stop growing. In addition to health, there is the deterioration of its economy. Even with promising news of a successful vaccine, it is unlikely that it will become widely distributed for many months.
“Covid-19 still determines the course of the economy. The current increase in cases is much more worrisome and is expected to be more disruptive for economic activity, ”estimated economist Diane Swonk from consultancy Grant Thornton.
In the week since he defeated Trump, Biden has devoted most of his public statements to encouraging Americans to wear a mask and to view the coronavirus as a threat that does not take political ideologies into account.
Although Biden avoids it, among the members of the advisory board for the coronavirus announced by the Democratic leader there was debate about the quarantine. One of its members, Dr. Michael Osterholm, suggested a confinement of between 4 and 6 weeks with financial aid for those most in need. It later retracted and was refuted by two other committee members, who noted that this measure should not be considered.
This is an indication of the complicated dynamics Biden will find himself in when he takes office in January. He campaigned as a more responsible American public health manager than Trump, and acknowledged the challenges the country faces with this pandemic.
But talking about lockdowns is an especially sensitive issue for Americans. First, it is nearly impossible for a president to enact it himself, so he would need the bipartisan endorsement of state and local officials. On the other, they are broadly a point of political confrontation that could undermine Biden’s efforts to unite a deeply divided nation.