GOP tries to rewrite history yet again for Trump's pandemic incompetence and inaction

The GOP keeps trying to rewrite history as a quarter-million deaths lie ahead with a failed policy, as if any death toll could be spun positively.

3 takeaways from the first night of the Republican National Convention


1. A promise of optimism, quickly abandoned

The GOP claimed that this convention would be significantly more optimistic than Democrats’ last week. Most of what we got Monday was decidedly not that.

Cuban American immigrant Maximo Alvarez, in an impassioned speech, suggested Democrats and possibly even Biden are secretly putting the country on a path to communism.

“I’m speaking to you today because I have seen people like this before. I’ve seen movements like these before,” Alvarez said, adding that things he heard from some Democrats “don’t sound radical to my ears; they sound familiar. Fidel Castro was asked if he was a communist. He said he was a Roman Catholic.”
Some of the headliners were less about the “doom and gloom,” notably former U.N. ambassador Nikki Haley and fellow South Carolinian, Sen. Tim Scott (R). Attacks are standard fare for conventions like this, but the thrust of the night was not as advertised.

2. A focus: Combating allegations of racism

One of the focal points — both in the choice of speakers and what some of them said — was the perception that Trump is a racist and that there is a racism problem in the GOP and the country.

Polls have shown half of Americans or more believe Trump is a racist. Trump has suggested that minority congresswomen should “go back” to their countries (despite most of them having been born here) and called a judge of Mexican descent biased against him, which then-House Speaker Paul D. Ryan (R-Wis.) called “the textbook definition of a racist comment.” He also recently retweeted a video that included a supporter saying “White power,” later deleting it but declining to disavow it.

3. Rewriting history on the coronavirus

The novel coronavirus is the issue Trump would rather not have looming over him. Polls show his approval rating on the pandemic dropping into the low to mid-30s, as the death toll climbs ever closer to the upper bound of what Trump himself would constitute a successful response.

But the convention began its prime hours Monday night by focusing on the unavoidable topic — and in one major way attempting to rewrite history.

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RNC tries to rewrite pandemic history, casting Trump as decisive leader. The narrative ignores missteps that let virus spread.