The extraordinary global and domestic health emergency has
brought with it so much uncertainty, especially about its duration
so far, that it is not yet possible to make credible election
predictions for November, 2020.
The Democratic presidential primary season has been delayed and
interrupted --- although its eventual outcome has seemingly already
been determined. Many key Democratic and Republican U.S. house
and senate races are in a kind of limbo as candidates attempt to
raise money and their campaign profiles in .a politically numbed
Polling, always inexact and time-limited, is probably of little use in
present circumstances. Public opinion now, needless to say, is
acutely emotional and short-term. The all-important economy is in
a suspended near-term state. The routines of daily lives have been
Virtually all public events and meetings have been postponed or
cancelled. In addition to sporting and cultural events, the shutting
down includes political meetings of all kinds, from fundraisers
and meet-and-greets to rallies and conventions.
Because of perceived danger and risk, the U.S. public is responding
cooperatively to temporary mandated “lockdowns” and other
restrictions on their daily lives. But the U.S.is a market economy,
and Americans cannot be expected to simply stay a home for an
extended period of time, many without job income and enduring
severe shortages of goods and services.
This is a unique moment when the political and business leaders,
including their teams of bureaucrats, managers and the creative
innovators among them need to think of new ways to pull us out
of the current crisis.
The preoccupation now must be dealing with and somehow
bringing to an end the emergency and its impact on the nation
and its people. Those who think solely or primarily in partisan
political considerations betray the larger public interests which
now must be served.
For those who successfully lead us, regardless of their partisan
political affiliations, with effective new thinking, there will be
rewards from a grateful nation later, but now the necessity is
coming up with those solutions, policies, strategies, treatments,
medicines and vaccines that will benefit everyone.
Not just the president and his administration, but the leaders of
the opposition party and the 50 state governors are being tested
in ways none of them imagined they would face on the scale now
Much is ahead now, and we must wish all decision-makers well
in what they will do --- not because we necessarily like all of
them or agree with all of them, but because so much now is at
stake for all of us --- and we’re in this together.
Politics and election campaigning will not, of course, cease.
Nor can we cease the nation’s commerce. Soon enough, we will
be debating the 2020 political issues, including some new ones.
We will also be shopping, meeting and dining out again.
Politics and commerce are vital to our economic, civic and
We might have to stand at arm’s length briefly, but we can only
survive and flourish again living and working side by side.
Copyright (c) 2020 by Barry Casselman. All rights reserved.