July 16, 2020
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FILE - In this March 22, 2020, file photo Vice President Mike Pence speaks alongside President Donald Trump during a coronavirus task force briefing at the White House in Washington. Pence says the U.S. response to the coronavirus pandemic is “a cause for celebration,” but a new poll finds more than half of Americans calling it fair or poor. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky, File)

Poll: Americans do not buy the White House spin on coronavirus

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WASHINGTON (AP) – Vice President Mike Pence says the US response to the coronavirus pandemic is “a reason to celebrate,” but a new poll finds that more than half of Americans call it fair or bad.

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Gallup and West Health Study Released Thursday found that 57% of US adults rated the national response to COVID-19 as satisfactory or poor, especially in light of the fact that America has the most expensive healthcare system in the world.

The numbers are tantamount to a flashing warning for President Donald Trump and his White House team seeking to change the narrative from forecasts showing an increasing number of pandemic deaths in the United States to a story about American sustainability and economic resurgence that reinforces his candidacy for re-election.

In a Wall Street Journal public opinion article published Wednesday, Pence criticized the media for focusing on the increasing number of COVID-19 cases in states such as Texas and Arizona.

“We slowed down the spread, we took care of the most vulnerable, we saved lives and created a solid foundation for any problems that we may face in the future,” writes Pence, who leads the White House Coronavirus Working Group. “This is a reason for the celebration, not the spread of fear in the media.”

The survey found that only 23% of adults rated the nationwide response as excellent or very good, while another 20% rated it as good.

“We always assumed that we had the best – why can’t there be enough masks, gloves and bathrobes in the US?” asked Dr. George Benjamin, head of the nonprofit American Public Health Association.

“The answer is that we always assumed that we had all these things without proper planning,” added Benjamin, who reviewed the results of the survey.

The survey is conducted in a period of uncertainty about the future pandemic in the United States.

The University of Washington Metrics and Health Assessment Institute is currently forecasting about 200,000 deaths by October 1, a significant upward revision from an organization whose modeling has received positive feedback from White House experts. In several states that attended the reopening, there has been an increase in coronavirus cases, and there are fears that massive demonstrations of African-American killings by the police may also accelerate the spread.

“I think that what we have seen in terms of the COVID response is divided and abstract leadership, and these numbers reflect America waking up from this,” said Tim Lash, president of the Western Center for Health Policy, which focuses on reduced health. care expenses.

Gallup poll director Dan Witters said weak reviews of coronavirus use are pronounced among people with higher levels of education. Sixty-five percent of college graduates rated it satisfactory or poor, compared with 49% of people with a high school diploma or less.

“As we move into a more educated segment of the population … the reaction becomes much more negative,” said Witters. Among people with graduate school, 72% said that the work on COVID-19 was satisfactory or poor.

Throughout the pandemic, Trump has been in conflict with many scientists, first downplaying the potential impact of the virus, and then treatment that turned out to be risky and ineffective.

The survey also showed a separation by race and ethnicity. Witters said blacks and other minorities are much more likely to put national ratings low (66%) compared to whites (51%). African Americans have experienced a disproportionate share of deaths and serious complications from the virus.

The survey reinforces public opinion about the partisan split regarding COVID-19: 44% of Republicans say the government’s response is excellent or very good compared to 6% of Democrats. Out of independent politicians, 57% rated the answer as satisfactory or poor, while 20% said it was excellent or very good.

However, there was broad agreement on one issue: from 88% to 11%, Americans want the government to coordinate prices for coronavirus treatment with the pharmaceutical industry. This feeling crosses the party lines.

The Gallup and West Health survey was based on telephone interviews from May 11 to 22 with a random sample of 1,016 adults 18 and over in all 50 states and Washington, DC. For results based on the entire sample, the maximum margin of sampling error is plus or minus 3.9 percentage points.

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