As Martin Luther King Jr. once said, “The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.”
If that’s the case, President Trump is quite the man indeed.
Whether they are directly affected by the coronavirus or not, Americans are suffering right now. Faced with self-quarantine and social distancing, the U.S. economy is hemorrhaging jobs and many of our businesses are closing for good.
More than half of America’s small businesses claim they can’t operate past the next three months.
Fortunately, the Trump administration is doing its best to lead us through an unprecedented crisis. When even Trump’s political opponents are praising the administration’s response efforts, like Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-Minn.) has, it’s clear that the White House is answering the bell.
Here are three examples:
Working with Democrats and Republicans — without appeasing the left.
Help is on the way. Trump recently signed a $2 trillion stimulus package — backed by most Democrats and Republicans — into law. Among other provisions, the package includes $1,200 emergency payouts to working Americans and more than $375 billion in small business loans, helping them pay their employees and cover other basic expenses.
While the stimulus is far from perfect, the administration held firm and refused to kowtow to the left’s demands. Even as House Democrats moved to impose racial and gender pay equity provisions, expand the collective bargaining power of labor unions, and increase fuel emission standards (among other unrelated demands), Trump focused negotiations on what actually matters — financial relief. He vowed to veto any bill that turned into a “Democratic wish list.”
It was Trump who made the left retreat. He forced the likes of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi to back down, and compromise for a better bill. And it worked.
Cooperating with the international community.
At the same time, Trump’s negotiations with Congress are not preventing him from cooperating with the international community. Acting as head of the “Group of 7,” the American president has reached an agreement on “coronavirus coordination” with countries like Canada, Germany and the United Kingdom. Under the agreement, the United States and its allies will pool medical resources and align their central banks, in addition to restricting travel.
For instance, the U.S.-Canada border remains closed to non-essential travel, in an attempt to contain the spread of the coronavirus and “flatten the curve” in both countries. This requires — in Trump’s words — “mutual consent” that can only be found when our president reacts swiftly and decisively to the situation at hand. He’s doing both.
Trump is also sending a message to the world: We are in this together. From China to Iran and Italy, the coronavirus has spread to hundreds of countries, and they all look to us for leadership. By heading up cooperation efforts, Trump is showing why we’re that “city on a hill.”
“Keep calm and carry on.”
The slogan may come from the British government during World War II, but Trump is giving it a whole new meaning. From news conferences to tweets, the administration continues to be clear and consistent in messaging to the American people.
On a daily basis, White House officials are stressing to Americans that we will get through this crisis if we make the right sacrifices, such as self-quarantining and social distancing.
In their words: “Nothing will stand in our way.” And it’s not just rhetoric: Trump is now “remov(ing) every barrier” to medical innovation, giving researchers the support they need to develop a coronavirus vaccine.
Even as Trump focuses on the greater good, he remains a beacon of optimism. One need only to check his Twitter feed for slogans like “God bless the USA” and “we will prevail.” It’s no wonder that 60 percent of Americans approve of Trump’s handling of the coronavirus.
During these turbulent times, Americans are desperate for good news and positive energy. And Trump is delivering. Just look at public opinion: Americans are fully onboard with the White House’s response efforts.
God bless the USA. We will prevail.