Coronavirus Response: Joe Biden Claims U.S. Had Worst Performance

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Former Vice President Joe Biden accepts the 2020 Democratic presidential nomination during a speech delivered for the 2020 Democratic National Convention from the Chase Center in Wilmington, Del., August 20, 2020. (Kevin Lamarque/Reuters)

Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden’s acceptance speech was teeming with whoppers, and one of the most misleading was his assertion that the United States had “by far the worst performance of any nation on Earth.”

For one thing, there are a number of nations that have experienced higher fatality rates than the United States, including Belgium, Britain, Spain, Italy, Sweden, Chile, and Brazil. (All of them, incidentally, have some form of government-run health care.)

Then there are developing nations that probably don’t have an accurate count on the death totals and authoritarian nations like China, whose mendacity helped unleashed the virus on the world, that are almost surely lying. Then there are still-mysterious reasons why some nations have low death rates despite many infections.

Moreover, we’re not a dictatorship, and we don’t have pliable population willing to lock everything down forever or do things like delay elections — as Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern recently did New Zealand; a nation so admired by liberals in this country.

For four days, Democrats have hit Donald Trump for both failing to stop coronavirus and for the economic fallout. Biden hasn’t explained how his administration could have rescued economy and beaten COVID, much less offered any specifics on how he plans on doing it moving forward — other than arguing for a national mask mandate, which he has no power to decree or enforce. Indeed, Democrats have spent four days bashing Republicans for the ferociousness of the COVID outbreak when, in fact, the only states that failed to flatten the curve are in the Northeast.

Now, many of countries that the media was praising are seeing new spikes. It’s clear that there is no escaping this thing. It’s well within reason for Democrats to hit Trump on his handling of certain aspects of the response. But this notion that Democrats would have been able to stop it just like “Ebola,” is a fantasy.

David Harsanyi is a senior writer for National Review and the author of First Freedom: A Ride through America’s Enduring History with the Gun

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