Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) issued his own dramatic response to the coronavirus outbreak on Thursday, and of course, he touted socialist ideas like his Medicare for All plan as a solution to the growing problems caused by the pandemic and response.
According to Sanders, who is a Democratic candidate for president, the U.S. could see more casualties from the coronavirus than were suffered during World War II.
Sanders: It’s a “major, major crisis”
“The crisis we face from the coronavirus is on a scale of a major war, and we must act accordingly,” Sanders warned in a speech on Thursday. “The number of casualties may actually be even higher than what the armed forces experienced in World War II. In other words, we have a major, major crisis and we must act accordingly.”
Sanders, a Democratic candidate for president, said he would declare a national emergency if he were president, and said that the government needed to make testing more available to those with symptoms.
Of course, Sanders thinks that everything related to testing and treatment of the virus needs to be free. He lamented that people might not seek treatment because of the cost and said we are in a bad position by not already having Medicare for All in place.
Businesses would not get help from the government except for low-interest loans, under Sanders’ plan. Utilities would not be allowed to shut off service to those who don’t pay their bills, and foreclosures and evictions would also be prevented during the crisis, Fox reported.
Sanders says that a vaccine should be free once it is available. “Obviously, when a vaccine or other effective treatment is developed, it must be free of charge.”
Scope of the virus
As of early Friday, around 1,700 people in the U.S. have tested positive for coronavirus and 41 people have died.
Many state governors are beginning to recommend or order large gatherings to be canceled, and several states including Ohio, Maryland, Oregon, New Mexico, Michigan, Kentucky, and the District of Columbia have closed all public schools in the state. Many colleges and universities have gone to online-only instruction for a number of weeks or the rest of the spring semester.
A previous pandemic, H1N1, or “swine flu,” killed 18,000 Americans in 2009, but then-President Barack Obama did not declare a national emergency until after 1,000 Americans had already died. Furthermore, large-scale shutdowns did not happen in that case, even after thousands of deaths.
It is entirely possible that much of the current panic has been encouraged by a left-wing media that has a vested political interest in seeing the economy in freefall and conditions in the country deteriorate.
Whether the effects are long-lasting enough to impact the election in November is yet to be seen.