I’m beginning to see some flaws in Donald Trump’s “do nothing about the pandemic and just open the schools anyway” re-election strategy:
Few Americans want to see their local schools reopen for in-person instruction as usual or even with minor adjustments, according to a survey conducted by The Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research July 16-20, 2020. A majority of Americans are concerned that reopening schools this fall for in-person learning will lead to a surge in new coronavirus infections.
Eight percent of Americans say their local K-12 schools should open for in-person instruction as usual and 14% think schools can reopen with minor adjustments. The public is far more likely to believe major adjustments are needed (46%) or that schools shouldn’t open at all (31%). While parents of school-age children are just as reticent as other Americans about sending children back to the classroom, Republicans are more positive about reopening schools than Democrats.
Views are similar when it comes to reopening daycares and preschools and universities. Just like attitudes toward K-12 reopenings, views differ based on party affiliation. For example, Democrats are three times more likely than Republicans to believe daycares and preschools should not open at all (46% vs. 15%).
Trump has managed to convince some of the most committed members of his death cult, and that’s pretty much it. (And I wouldn’t bet that all of this abstract support will hold up when an actual outbreak happens.)
The way to get schools to re-open is to suppress the virus. If that doesn’t happen, re-opening is not going to be viable and will collapse at some point in most cases.