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In 2020, personal protective equipment has merged with partisan politics. As USSC’s Dr Gorana Grgic pointed out to ABC News at the start of the month, President Trump’s choice to avoid wearing face masks signals that he is “strong,” that “life is back to normal,” and she continued to say “dismissing and questioning experts is what he’s been doing for most of his political career.” But this changed on Saturday when President Trump donned a mask for his visit to a military hospital. The supply of masks has also been used as a tool for international coercion and exploitation known as “mask diplomacy” as discussed in a USSC webinar on 19 May.
Both the Biden and Trump campaigns have been trying to move the focus beyond the pandemic. The Biden-Sanders Joint Task Force has given the most detailed policy positions to date in an effort to solidify a democratic coalition that will turn up to the polls in November. The Trump campaign also has the opportunity to return to their greatest hits with the potential to replace not just one, but possibly two Supreme Court justices with speculation circling about Justices Clarence Thomas and Ruth Bader Ginsberg. However, the Trump campaign now must split attention to run damage control for the new book from his niece, Mary Trump.