- Democratic nominee Joe BIden pushed back during Thursday night’s debate against President Donald Trump’s repeated claim that he would tank the economy with shutdowns if elected.
- “I’m going to shut down the virus, not the country,” Biden said.
- “It’s his ineptitude that caused the country to have to shut down in large part,” he added.
- The line was part of a concerted strategy from the Biden campaign to chip away at Trump’s last stronghold in polling, with more voters approving of the president’s handling of the economy for months. The former VP is closing the gap and even pulling ahead in a recent Morning Consult survey.
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Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden debuted a new line during Thursday night’s debate.
“I’m going to shut down the virus, not the country,” Biden said.
The former vice president was pushing back on President Donald Trump’s repeated claim that he would tank the economy with shutdowns if elected.
— Bloomberg Quicktake (@Quicktake) October 23, 2020
“It’s his ineptitude that caused the country to have to shut down in large part,” Biden said.
Research has shown that individual decisions accounted for much of the downturn in economic activity back in the spring, with many states taking minimal shutdown measures in comparison to other countries in the absence of a robust federal response.
Biden’s pandemic plan focuse on increasing testing and contact tracing in addition to sending more federal funds to schools for safer reopenings.
In the past, Biden has said that if the nation’s top medical experts urged him to do a more complete lockdown, he would listen to them and do so.
However, Biden has also noted that the federal government is limited in its power over the states because of the 10th Amendment â€” an issue Trump struggled with in an inverse way when he was pushing states to lift their lockdown measures.
Biden’s line is also part of a concerted strategy to whittle away at Trump’s lone remaining advantage in polling, with a plurality of Americans trusting the president more on the economy.
The strategy has made an impact in the polls, with Biden closing the gap and even pulling ahead in a recent Morning Consult survey.