Washington | It is wearing a black mask that Joe Biden has made his first public appearance in more than two months, the symbol, the face of a Donald Trump who had categorically refused to show hidden, America is divided in this presidential campaign is rocked by the crisis of the sars coronavirus.
The former american vice-president has chosen for his return to the field Monday, a day marked by solemnity, the United States, as it celebrates the memory of Americans fallen in combat.
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The occasion was this time still more darkened by the balance sheet of a staggering pandemic that has caused nearly 100 000 deaths in the United States, the country most grief-stricken of the world.
Accompanied by his wife Jill Biden, the democratic candidate for the White House, 77 years, has laid a wreath at a monument to american veterans near his home. Both wore a black mask and outfits dark.
To a hundred kilometres away, the republican president, 73-year-old, and his wife Melania Trump were involved in their second homage to the soldiers of the day, without wearing a mask.
“This meets our divisions: the two parties agree on nothing, not even public health measures,” said Larry Sabato, a political scientist at the university of Virginia.
This contrast corresponds in large part to the type of supporters of the two candidates, ” he continues.
“The democrats are largely supported by women (…), women are highly favourable to the measures of social distancing and the wearing of the mask. Trump on the other hand is largely driven by white men, especially the laborers are white. They perceive the mask as a sign of weakness”, he says.
Compounding also may be differences in the perception of the danger, the pandemic struck more fiercely up here on the regions that vote democrat, with a higher mortality, according to studies by the New York Times and The Economist.
The image of Joe Biden wearing his famous aviator goggles on his black mask, which rabattait his ears forward, has been tweetée by Brit Hume, a columnist of the chain is popular with the conservative Fox News, with a comment mocking: “this may help to explain why Trump doesn’t like to wear a mask in public.”
A message retweeted by Donald Trump himself on Monday night, and thousands of internet users.
“Presidents lead by example, and wear a mask that helps protect others,” responded the spokesperson of Joe Biden, TJ Ducklo.
“Donald Trump should try to do the same, because its failure to act early enough to produce protective equipment, increase the screening and put in place a national response to this crisis has cost the lives of thousands of Americans,” he told AFP.
The former vice president Barack Obama had not left his home in Delaware for a public appearance since mid-march, when the crisis of the COVID-19 was suddenly paralyzed the campaign for the us presidential election of November 3.
If it is offered a few strolls on foot or by bike, away from the cameras, Joe Biden had only campaigned through video conferencing from his home in Wilmington.
A choice there also mocked by the republicans and Donald Trump, who was described as a man fearing the action of the field, or even sequestered in his own basement.
During this time, the republican president had the attention of the media at the White House and were on official travel in key States for the presidential election. Never wear mask in front of the cameras.
Of the few republican votes are trying to go beyond partisan lines around the pandemic, such as the governor of North Dakota, Doug Burgum, who had called, just before the long holiday weekend, his fellow countrymen not to fall into the “division insane”.
“If someone wears a mask, he does not show to which party he belongs to or what candidate he supports it,” he said, repressing her tears. “It may be because he has a child five years of age treated for cancer. He may be vulnerable adults in his entourage, who are at this moment trying to fight against the COVID”.