by Mitch Kokai
Senior Political Analyst, John Locke Foundation
Over the past two weeks, President Trump’s overall approval rating and specifically approval of his handling of the Chinese virus have been spiking. You would think that most people would view this as good thing, I mean, in the middle of a crisis, having faith in leadership is better than not having faith in leadership, right? For many on the left, though, these numbers are cause for consternation. …
… [S]uffice it to say, to those for whom hating Trump has become the passion of a lifetime, the president’s relative popularity is infuriating. It is also confounding to them, and it’s worth thinking about why.
Trump’s initial response to virus, in late January and into February, was not great. He did seem to be downplaying what we know now to be a cataclysmic crisis, but he was far from alone in that. …
… The president hasn’t taken himself out of the spotlight entirely; he plays the role of cheerleader in opening remarks during most of the daily press conferences, but then passes the mic, as the Beastie Boys might say, to Pence and the pros. Those pros, Drs. Anthony Fauci and Deborah Birx in particular, have brought some solace and comfort to a confused and frightened public.
And what is the result? Now networks like CNN and MSNBC are saying they won’t air the press conferences. Imagine that: the nation’s leading experts are trying to talk to the American people and leftist media idiots want to cut it off.
For Trump supporters, this is all obviously delicious. But that really isn’t the point. The point is that in a time of national crisis, Trump has changed his behavior and risen to the challenge. Our friends on the left either can’t or refuse to see this.