Democratic nominee Joe Biden’s campaign said Friday it was pulling all negative ads against President Donald Trump in light of the president’s recent COVID-19 diagnosis, Newsweek reported.
Coronavirus strikes White House
Early Friday morning Trump announced on Twitter that both he and first lady Melania Trump had tested positive for the virus.
The decision to pull the ads was reportedly made by Biden and his advisers after the president announced his positive COVID-19 diagnosis but before he was taken to the Walter Reed Medical Center, according to CBS News. It has not been reported how long the ads would remain down.
Stunned by the move, some Biden supporters criticized it on social media, with the Lincoln Project tweeting that Trump “deserves no courtesy.” Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) tweeted, “Why would Biden delay or suspend his campaign when we know Trump would’ve had ads up by noon today ridiculing Biden for testing positive? Get it together.”
Biden, who is still pushing ahead with his campaign, wished the president and first lady well via Twitter on Friday. “Jill and I send our thoughts to President Trump and First Lady Melania Trump for a swift recovery,” Biden tweeted. “We will continue to pray for the health and safety of the president and his family.”
It’s all politics
The Trump campaign has decided to continue with its ads and pointed out that the Biden campaign has little ground to stand on considering Biden is still taking shots at the president on the campaign trail.
“Joe Biden used his speech in Michigan today to attack President Trump. He’s in no position to say anything,” the Trump campaign reportedly told Forbes in a statement regarding its decision not to pull its ads.
Biden seizing the moment
With Trump in the hospital, it seems clear the Biden is seizing this moment to try to appear as a great unifier.
This may be unconvincing to some Americans, as Biden just recently compared the president to Nazi Germany’s Minister of Propaganda, Joseph Goebbels, arguably one of the most evil men in history.
Nevertheless, Biden said at a campaign event in Michigan on Friday that Trump’s diagnosis “is not a matter of politics,” CNBC reported. He continued: “It’s a bracing reminder to all of us that we have to take this virus seriously. It’s not going away automatically. We have to do our part to be responsible.”
It seems that in addition to trying to make himself look like a creator of unity, Biden is also seizing this moment to double down on Trump’s handling of the virus. In a statement from Biden communications director Josh Schwerin to CBS News, he said the Biden campaign has “no plans to pull back on our ongoing efforts to hold the President accountable for his failures on the pandemic.”