TRIBUNE NEWS SERVICE — It’s Christmas season and President Donald Trump is Santa Claus trying to slide down chimneys, often finding them a tight fit, but working with others to pass out presents that could save a nation: COVID-19 vaccines.
His term is expiring, he’s still trying to overturn the election outcome, and remember news outlets saying this early vaccine was impossible, that Trump was irresponsibly misleading people about his Warp Speed program.
NBC said it would take a “miracle to be right” on the vaccine saving lives before the end of the year, and boos were reinvigorated after Vice President Mike Pence restated the claim in a debate. Still the public-private partnership worked in scientifically instructed coordination as the government abandoned regulations handicapping the drug companies and gave them billions of dollars.
Finally, we had CNBC saying the vaccine adventure had “shattered every record in modern medical history,” and we can rejoice at 614,000 people already receiving protective shots and 300 million more in line.
Given his depression over the election, Trump has actually lacked Santa Claus flamboyance. He has been missing an opportunity to end his term by buoyantly boosting spirits as his team executes a historic rescue with precision. Of course, the left has never given him credit for anything and has cheaply insisted he is responsible for most of the virus deaths.
Despite Trump’s unforgivable bumbles, the real responsibility on most fatality issues rests with the states. The Trump administration has made major moves from the start and connect the brilliant Pfizer and Moderna pharmaceutical firms to the Warp Speed program and we are in a hurrah moment.
This achievement is as joyous as the pandemic has been horrific, but some are worrying about taking the vaccine, others are pointing out that virus dangers have lately been increasing and we’ve got an argument about whether we should have a far-reaching economic shutdown. We shouldn’t. There are ways to protect the most vulnerable without a shutdown that, at its worst, could assure long-term economic wreckage and more deaths.
Trump’s pre-pandemic economic accomplishments have helped the country endure the onslaught and we have had numerous indications of economic relief when the virus tapers off. It was surely encouraging for Pence and President-elect Joe Biden to agree to videos showing them receiving shots.
Trump is clearly down and out because of his election loss and is insistent on recounts that are not going to happen. He should cut it out and the tearfully shocked New York Times should understand this legal frenzy is not a fraction of the attack on our most cherished principles as was easily discovered in the scandalous Mueller investigation.
Then there’s this virus relief bill that could maybe do some good with its $900 billion even as Sherlockian journalists probe its 5,593 pages and find out, for instance, that we are giving Pakistan $25 million for women’s rights studies. How many Americans is that going to save from the virus?
Who knows what Trump faces in the political afterlife — prosecutors have not given up on considering his eligibility for prison — but let’s hope he enjoys the holidays with his family and that at least some fair souls here and there mention his prison reform, record high employment in numerous categories, the highest median income in U.S. history before the pandemic, major peace initiatives in the Middle East and more needed money for the military, as examples.
To be sure, Trump’s faults are voluminous, but so were the attacks on him for everything and nothing. Virtually eradicating the virus in the United States by the end of 2021 is no small thing, and it could happen.
Jay Ambrose is an op-ed columnist for Tribune News Service. Readers may send emails to email@example.com. © 2020 Tribune Content Agency.