- The Washington Times - Monday, April 20, 2020

The coronavirus pandemic has sparked a partisan blame game. Most Democratic voters — 60% — now blame President Trump rather than China, for the health emergency now underway nationwide, according to a Rasmussen Reports survey released Monday.

Among all voters, 42% also pointed the finger at the president.

Not so Republicans. The poll found that 71% disagreed with the idea, along with 46% of independents.

The pollster based the question on recent public commentary from Sen. Chris Murphy. The Connecticut Democrat suggested that China and the World Health Organization were not responsible for the coronavirus crisis, clearly casting blame on Mr. Trump, instead.

“The reason that we’re in the crisis that we are today is not because of anything that China did, is not because of anything the WHO did. It’s because of what this president did,” Mr. Murphy told CNN.

“It’s because he didn’t take this virus seriously. We weren’t going to be able to keep every case out of the United States, but we didn’t have to have tens of thousands of people dying,” the senator said.

The survey also revealed partisan divides about the U.S. response to the pandemic.

“Thirty-two percent of all voters think the U.S. government’s response to the coronavirus has been better than government actions in most other countries. Forty-two percent say it’s worse than others, while 24% view it as about the same,” the poll said.

“Sixty-two percent of Democrats believe the U.S. government’s response has been worse than others. Fifty-six percent of GOP voters think the U.S. response has been better. Among voters not affiliated with either major party, 24% say better, 42% worse, and 32% about the same.”

The survey of 1,000 likely U.S. voters was conducted April 16-19.

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