Covid surge hangs over US election in closing days

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US states have been grappling with surges in coronavirus circumstances that threatened to overwhelm hospitals as Donald Trump and Joe Biden staged competing marketing campaign rallies on Saturday with simply 10 days to go till the presidential election.

Mr Trump’s intense schedule included three battleground states — North Carolina, Ohio and Wisconsin — on Saturday as he tries to meet up with his Democratic rival, who’s main in nationwide polls by 8.7 proportion factors, in response to Monetary Occasions evaluation of Actual Clear Politics information.

At his first rally in Lumberton North Carolina, Mr Trump insisted the US was “rounding the flip” on coronavirus, regardless of a number of states posting file one-day will increase in new Covid-19 infections on Friday. These included the important swing states of Ohio, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin.

“We’re doing nice. Our numbers are unbelievable,” Mr Trump stated on the rally on Saturday afternoon. Mr Trump blamed the media for specializing in the an infection numbers, which he stated have been the results of widespread testing.

“That’s all I hear about now . . . activate tv, Covid, Covid, Covid,” he stated. “We present extra circumstances as a result of we take a look at.”

“Individuals are uninterested in all this negativity.”

The US reported 82,668 new Covid-19 circumstances on Saturday, down from a file one-day excessive of 83,010 on Friday, in response to the Covid Monitoring Undertaking. Deaths additionally edged all the way down to 885 from 916 on Friday.

Ohio, the place Trump spoke Saturday night, reported a record-high 2,858 new circumstances on Saturday, up from 2,518 on Friday. Illinois, the sixth most populous state, on Saturday reported 6,161 new confirmed circumstances and stated 63 extra folks died from the virus. On Friday, Chicago restarted a curfew and ordered bars to shut for indoor service. 

Greater than 216,000 Individuals have died from Covid-19 — a better complete than another nation.

Line chart showing how Trump and Biden are doing in the US national polls

Mr Biden, the Democratic challenger, on Saturday toured Pennsylvania, a swing state the place Mr Trump beat Hillary Clinton 4 years in the past by a razor-thin margin of some 44,000 votes.

“It is go-time, of us. It’s sport day,” Mr Biden advised a drive-in rally in Bucks county, simply north of Philadelphia. “We’ve 10 days left. And it could come all the way down to Pennsylvania. The selection has by no means been clearer and the stakes have by no means been larger.”

The previous vice-president, who has sought to make November’s election a referendum on Mr Trump’s dealing with of the coronavirus pandemic, tore into the president’s public well being file.

A supporter waits at a drive-in rally for former US President Barack Obama to marketing campaign on behalf of Democratic presidential nominee and his former Vice-President Joe Biden in Miami, Florida on Saturday © REUTERS

“Yesterday, whereas he’s telling the whole lot’s all proper, we noticed the very best quantity — 85,000 new circumstances in someday — since this pandemic started,” Mr Biden stated. He has stated that if he have been president, he would mandate mask-wearing in federal buildings and in interstate journey, and encourage state governors and native officers to do the identical of their jurisdictions.

Amid public well being considerations about voting on election day, at the very least 56m Individuals have already voted early, both by mail or in-person, in response to the College of Florida’s US Elections Undertaking.

Mr Trump, who modified his official residence from New York to Florida final 12 months, voted early, in-person, on Saturday morning at a library in West Palm Seashore.

The president advised reporters that it was a “very safe vote” and the whole lot was good”, including: “I voted for a man named Trump.”

Campaigning for his former vice-president in Miami, Florida, ex-president Barack Obama stated that Mr Trump could be the primary US president to really lose jobs due to his “botching” of the pandemic response.

“He did inherit the longest streak of jobs progress in American historical past that we acquired began. However similar to the whole lot else he inherited, he fumbled it,’ Mr Obama stated.

“The one people who find themselves actually higher off than they have been 4 years in the past are the billionaires who acquired Trump tax cuts.”

Mr Obama stated his administration had left Mr Trump a “playbook” on how to reply to a pandemic.

“It should be misplaced together with the Republican healthcare plan,” he stated.

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