What Good State And Local Chief Executives Are Up Against

Imagine there’s no president

It’s easy if you try

Fore the one we have

All he does is lie

It is early Saturday evening as I begin this article. To date the best actions taken in consideration of the coronavirus pandemic have come from state and some local elected officials. They are forced to act on their own and do the best they can because the Trump led federal government has basically abandoned the American people.

I watched part of Trump’s Friday Comedy Hour from the White House. I tuned in rather fortuitously just as NBC’s Peter Alexander lobbed a softball question at the president. Instead of hitting it out of the park as a skilled politician, or mediocre person for that matter, would have Trump attacked Alexander. During the next few minutes Trump told a multitude of lies. One of them was such a whopper that Dr. Anthony Fauci was forced to bow his head and cover his face as he stood in the background.

In his new daily sit-com Trump spends most of his time patting himself on the back, illustrating his ignorance and flat out lying; often simultaneously. Friday the Dow was running in the lower left hand corner and the more Trump spoke the deeper it dove. Remember Friday’s Dow started off in positive territory but ended the day down by over 900 points.

At this point the best thing Trump could do is clear off the stage, take his sycophants with him and let the health care professionals take over the operation. Does anyone with credible information sources and a functioning brain really believe anything coming out of Trump’s, Pence’s, Pompeo’s or Azar’s mouths anymore?

While it leaks like a sieve this administration is still secretive when it comes to protecting Trump. It is now coming out that he was briefed in January about the coming coronavirus. What did he do? Remember he initially called it a, “Hoax”. Now he is blaming it on the Chinese and President Obama. Maybe he needs to be reminded of the sign Harry Truman put on his desk in the Oval Office which read, “The buck stops here”. Mr. Trump you are the President of the United States and your number one obligation is to keep the people of the United States safe. You are not only miserably failing at that you don’t even appear to be putting in an earnest effort.

While several governors have done yeoman’s work under difficult circumstances I’ll recognize a few in particular; Andrew Cuomo of New York, Larry Hogan of Maryland, Jay Inslee of Washington, Gavin Newsom of California and Jay Pritzker of Illinois. It is worth noting that all but Hogan are Democrats. In fact Florida’s governor Ron DeSantis is typical of most GOP governors. Many local officials in the Sunshine State have closed their beaches. That is a big blow to their local economies especially considering this is Spring Break season. DeSantis has failed to provide statewide leadership leaving it up to the local officials.

Many governors are doing the best they can with malarkey coming from DC instead of assistance. In many cases they have asked for specific assistance and it is not forthcoming. State action alone is insufficient. It is like having a non-peeing section in a swimming pool.

If you are fortunate to live in a state with a Democratic governor you might have a fighting chance. Even then no state is an “island”. The best thing you can do is to practice social distancing until the threat subsides for at least two weeks. Most red state, Republican governors are afraid to take action least Trump think them defiant. We can only hope that the few grownups in the room will get Trump off his unjustifiably high horse and to work. Then we have to hope too much time hasn’t already been wasted. Until then we have to hope our state and local officials will imagine there is no president. In this case that might actually improve our situation.

The style, not the substances, of this article was inspired by John Lennon’s 1971 hit Imagine.

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