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Last Updated : Oct 24, 2020 07:20 AM IST | Source: PTI

US Election 2020: Americans are learning to die with coronavirus, says Joe Biden

More than 220,000 Americans have lost their lives, which is more than one-fifth of the total global death, Biden said in a major policy speech on the coronavirus, a day after the final presidential debate he had with the Republican incumbent Donald Trump.

PTI

Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden said Americans are not learning to live with COVID-19, but learning to die with it as the pandemic has dwarfed anything that the country faced in recent history and is not showing any signs of slowing down.

More than 220,000 Americans have lost their lives, which is more than one-fifth of the total global death, Biden said in a major policy speech on the coronavirus, a day after the final presidential debate he had with the Republican incumbent Donald Trump.

Biden, in his speech in his home state of Delaware, blamed the policies of Trump for the deadly spread of the virus that has had a devastating impact on the country's economy.

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"President Trump said we're rounding the corner, it's going away, we're learning to live with it. They are quotes. But as I told him last night, we're not learning to live with it. We're learning to die with it. This is a dark winter ahead," Biden, 77, said.

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"Already more than 220,000 people in the US have lost their lives to this virus. Worse yet, a new study from Columbia University suggests that anywhere between 130,000 and 210,000 of those deaths were avoidable," he said.

"COVID-19 dwarfs anything we've faced in recent history and it isn't showing any signs of slowing down. The virus is surging in almost every state. We passed 4.8 million cases. And when Trump was asked this week what he'd do differently to get the pandemic response right from the start his answer was and I quote, 'Not much. Not much.'," said the former vice president.

Alleging that Trump does not have a plan to fight the coronavirus, Biden said the longer he is the President, the "more reckless" he gets.

"We don't have to be held prisoner by this administration's failures. We can choose a different path. We can do what Americans have always done: come together and meet the challenge with grit, compassion, and determination," he said.

Revealing his plan, if voted to power in November, Biden said he would immediately put in place a national strategy that will position the country to finally get ahead of this virus and get back the lives.

Biden said he will ask the new Congress to put a bill on his desk by the end of January with all the resources necessary to see how both the public health and economic response can be seen through the end what is needed.

Biden said he will go to every governor and urge them to mandate wearing masks in their states. "And if they refuse, I'll go to the mayors and county executives and get local masking requirements in place nationwide," he said, adding that as President he will mandate mask wearing at all federal buildings and all interstate transportation.

"Because masks save lives," he said, adding that he will put a national testing plan in place with a goal of testing as many people each day as they are currently testing each week. The Democratic presidential candidate said the vaccine would be free and freely available to everyone.

Describing this as a Biden-Harris agenda, he said that it is going to take all Americans working together. "And that's not hyperbole, all of us working together, watching out for one another. We're all still going to have to wear a mask or practise social distancing a while longer. It's going to be hard," he said.

"But if we follow the science and keep faith with one another, I promise you, we'll get through this and come out the other side much faster than the rate we're going now. Look, you all know this. The American people have always given their best to this country in times of crisis. And this time isn't any different," he said.
First Published on Oct 24, 2020 07:11 am
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