Pence debate win, COVID recovery boost week

This week’s White House Report Card finds President Trump just 25 days from Election Day and trying to scramble the polls that find him trailing Democrat Joe Biden.

© J. Scott Applewhite/AP
President Donald Trump arrives back at the White House aboard Marine One after being treated for COVID-19 at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center, in Washington, Monday, Oct. 5, 2020.

White House officials, showing some confidence because those same polls showed Trump behind Hillary Rodham Clinton in 2016, got a bit of a boost from Vice President Mike Pence’s debate win over challenger Sen. Kamala Harris and the president’s quick recovery from COVID-19.

Just like the country, our graders remain far apart. Conservative analyst Jed Babbin graded the week a “B,” citing the president’s recovery, while Democratic pollster John Zogby gave another “F,” noting the president’s call for the nation to move past the virus.

Jed Babbin

Grade: B

It was a pretty good week for President Trump with an outstanding performance by Vice President Pence in the veep debate, Trump’s speedy recovery from the COVID-19 virus and his strong positions on further negotiations with House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and in refusing to participate in a “virtual” debate with Joe Biden.

Mike Pence took on Kamala Harris and ate her lunch. Harris — like Biden — refused to answer the question of whether they’d try to pack the Supreme Court and Pence made a big moment from that. Harris didn’t help herself by smirking and making up a tall tale about Honest Abe Lincoln not nominating a successor to Roger Taney in the middle of an election. (The Senate was in recess when Taney died in October 1864.) Unfortunately for Trump, vice presidential debates almost never affect the outcome of an election.

Trump’s speedy recovery from the COVID-19 was after treatments that aren’t yet available widely but should be. In any event, he was back to full speed almost immediately.

Trump first cancelled the ongoing stimulus/relief negotiations with Pelosi when a deal couldn’t be made. Having failed to remove Trump with her January impeachment of him, Pelosi now wants a presidential commission established to remove Trump under the 25th Amendment. Ain’t gonna happen. Pelosi, who is often praised by her fellow Democrats as a political genius, hasn’t evidenced such a genius so far.

John Zogby

Grade: F

There is nothing humorous about this president. I cannot speculate what goes on his mind; I can only respond to the public face.

With 24 days until Americans finish casting their votes, President Trump still refuses to condemn white supremacy and white supremacists; lacks the common decency to call the governor of Michigan after an alleged plot to kidnap her; tells a nation where over 212,000 have died and 7 million have been infected that they should not let COVID-19 dominate their lives; sets a terrible example in how he has dealt with the medical community and everything personal in his own life; and calls the vice presidential nominee of the Democratic Party a ‘monster.’

He is down in the polls in varying degrees and it is getting late. Even worse, he still refuses to say he will accept the will of the voters if he does not win.

Jed Babbin is a Washington Examiner contributor and former deputy undersecretary of defense in the administration of former President George H.W. Bush. Follow him on Twitter @jedbabbin

John Zogby is the founder of the Zogby Poll and senior partner at John Zogby Strategies. His weekly podcast with son and partner Jeremy Zogby can be heard here. Follow him on Twitter @TheJohnZogby

Tags: Washington Secrets

Original Author: Paul Bedard

Original Location: White House Report Card: Pence debate win, COVID recovery boost week

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