From the time the COVID pandemic hit, the GOP has been trying to parrot the message that the Democrats have been using it as an excuse to shut down the entire economy – although they’re never really clear on why that is, and the talking point just turns into some deranged conspiracy theory. Despite their predictions that the pandemic would either miraculously disappear in the summer (of 2020) or after the election and Joe Biden’s inauguration, the pandemic has only persisted – particularly in states where the GOP has full control. Florida and Texas are the prime worst examples right now – causing scandal after scandal for their respective governors.
Despite the Republicans’ desperate cling to some myth about Democrats determined to ruin the economy, a recent study reveals that exactly the opposite has been happening. While the GOP and right wing media have largely been discouraging people from getting the vaccine, the majority of Democrats have been consistently trusting the science from the time vaccines were introduced. The result is that the more vaccinated counties of the US, which largely went to President Biden in 2020, are where the economic activity is thriving. In fact, the 520 counties that he won contributed to 71% of the gross domestic product for last year – and these are among the most vaccinated in the US. Of the counties that Trump carried, less than half were vaccinated.
If Republicans were just a bit more successful in the election last year, the economy and its recovery would be considerably bleaker. Of course, none of this is to suggest that the counties that Trump won are deserving of their fate – and in fact, the rate of vaccinations are accelerating as the situation in these states is more dire. What it does show, however, is that Republicans who passively allowed this crisis to happen should be voted out at all levels, no matter how local, and we need to push for that to happen in 2021 and 2022.
James Sullivan is the assistant editor of Brain World Magazine and an advocate of science-based policy making