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COVID-19 Update 24 March 2020

American governors are playing politics with peoples' lives.


Italy turns a corner, Boris gets serious, America struggles to spend $2T, and for God's sake, don't eat fish tank cleaner.

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The Latest Stats (non-China)





What you need to know right now

  • American lawmakers still can't figure out how to spend $2T saving the economy. Too much pork on the left, too little oversight on the right.
  • Italy appears to have turned the corner with three straight days of fewer reported infections.
  • The UK is under full lockdown, finally.
  • An Arizona man is dead, and his wife is in critical condition after they ate fish tank cleaner, which contains chloroquine phosphate. Please do not take any chemicals that haven't been approved by the FDA (or your country's counterpart), regardless of who tells you they're safe.
  • New symptoms have been identified:
    • Loss of smell or taste
    • Digestion problems

Want to help? Click here to see a list of charities supporting communities affected by the outbreak.

Playing Politics with Public Health

Of the eighteen states that have initiated lockdown procedures, only two are led by a Republican.

To a large extent, that can be explained away due to population density:
  • More people in a smaller space = more contagion = more need for a lockdown, and
  • More dense states tend to be more progressive
But statewide population density doesn't fully match up with outbreak density.

One the left is outbreak density. On the right is population density.
Moreover, there are some seriously infected states here that haven't gone into lockdown. Four stand out:
  • Florida
  • Georgia
  • Texas
  • Washington
Three of those four are led by vulnerable Republican governors. Which is another way of saying, three of those states are led by men who really need President Trump's help to win the next election.

Because of the way electoral math works, six states will decide who wins the presidential election in 2020. The three states above (Florida, Georgia, Texas) also happen to be three of the six so-called battleground states.

A weak economy in those battleground states going into November is surely no good thing for President Trump's reelection chances.

So President Trump really needs those states to stay open for business as long as possible.
The two GOP-led states that have initiated lockdown?
  • South Carolina
  • Massachusetts
Both safe Republican seats that won't factor in 2020.

It sure looks like those governors are keeping the stable door open in exchange for Trump's support in their next election.

If you live in Florida, Georgia, or Texas, please stay home.

If you live anywhere, please stay at home.

Carter Hopkins

Carter is a former US Army Ranger, US Army intelligence officer, and counterintelligence officer with the Defence Intelligence Agency. He has a BA in Political Science from UCLA and an MA in Security Studies from Georgetown.

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