LANSING — As Donald Trump travels to Michigan in a desperate attempt to take a victory lap over his inadequate COVID-19 response, the Michigan Democratic Party is highlighting the ways Trump has failed Michiganders during this public health crisis.
Months after Donald Trump promised “anybody that wants a test can get a test,” Michigan is still facing testing shortfalls due to the federal government’s inadequate COVID-19 response. Here are the top stories on Donald Trump’s testing failures since the beginning of the crisis:
Michigan has the highest death rate from coronavirus in the nation, and has conducted among the fewest tests per capita of states hit hardest by the pandemic.
With 95 new deaths reported Monday, Michigan has had 1,602 die from COVID-19.
But as a percentage of confirmed cases, deaths equal 6 percent of all confirmed cases, the highest rate in the nation. Even New York, with more than 10,000 deaths, has a lower death rate because it has tested three times as many people on a per-capita basis.
President Donald Trump is wrongly casting blame on governors and the Obama administration for shortages in coronavirus testing and declaring victory over what he calls relatively low death rates in the U.S. That’s too soon to tell.
Trump’s assertion that governors are not using already available testing capacity is contradicted by one of his top health advisers. He’s also wrong that Democrats are the only ones expressing concerns about the adequacy of COVID-19 testing; several Republican governors also point to problems.
Since the first COVID-19 case was confirmed March 10, Michigan has averaged about 3,300 tests per day.
“We think, based on talking to experts across the country, that we need to get to at least about 15,000 tests (a day) in the state to be able to really get a good understanding of who has the disease so we can guide our public health response,” Khaldun said last week.
The state has begun to ramp up coronavirus testing to try to meet that goal, but a nationwide shortage of supplies such as swabs and reagents has slowed the process.
“Donald Trump’s record on testing has been nothing but empty words and broken promises as he forces Michiganders to fly blind during a global pandemic,” said Michigan Democratic Party spokesman Christian Slater. “This president’s erratic and inadequate response to COVID-19 has failed Michigan at every turn as he chooses messaging gimmicks and political games over the lives of everyday people.”