Donald Trump. (Alex Brandon)
More Americans blame their government rather than other countries for the coronavirus crisis in the United States, a rebuke to the Donald Trump administration's claim that China and other countries are more to blame, according to a poll released Monday. .
The survey by the University of Chicago Harris School of Public Policy and The Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research was conducted before Trump tested positive for the virus on Friday and was hospitalized. The president has downplayed the severity and impact of the pandemic in recent months.
Although many see a lot of blame and there is a wide bipartisan division over who is responsible, 56% of Americans say that the government bears substantial responsibility for the situation; 47% blame the governments of other countries and 39% say the same about the World Health Organization.
“This reflects a general lack of confidence in the way the government has handled the situation,” said Austin Wright of the Harris School of Public Policy.
More than 1 million people around the world, including more than 200,000 Americans, have died from COVID-19. Trump has directly blamed the spread of the virus to China, where it originated, and an inadequate response from the WHO.
Heading into the November elections, Trump has steadily escalated criticism of China over the virus and has announced that the United States will halt funding and withdraw from the international health agency over alleged Chinese interference in its work . Public health experts maintain that China bears some responsibility, but they have also criticized Trump's response.
The survey also showed that most think the United States should play a significant role in developing a coronavirus vaccine , but many also believe that other countries should play a role, including European countries and China.
But if the United States develops a vaccine first, 6 out of 10 say it should be reserved for Americans first, even if that means fewer people worldwide are getting vaccinated.