Right now, the world is understandably focused on Donald Trump's revelation that he has been diagnosed with Covid-19. Just how sick is the president? How will it affect the presidential campaign? The questions are virtually endless in this historically unprecedented moment.
At the same time, we are witnessing yet another example of how Joe Biden would behave if he becomes president next January. The results speak for themselves: This is what a president looks like.
Putting politics aside, Biden's response to Trump's diagnosis and Biden's own transparency at how he hand his family were handling their potential exposure to the virus were a simple and straightforward display of how a public official responds to a crisis. And after nearly four years of Trump as commander-in-chief, that in itself is an unusual moment to behold.
Let's take a quick look at how Biden has handled this crisis so far. Shortly after Trump tweeted his diagnosis, Biden sent out his own tweet, which was filled with common decency and empathy: "Jill and I send our thoughts to President Trump and First Lady Melania Trump for a swift recovery. We will continue to pray for the health and safety of the president and his family."
Jill and I send our thoughts to President Trump and First Lady Melania Trump for a swift recovery. We will continue… https://t.co/8ESvUS6vBj— Joe Biden (@Joe Biden)1601642710.0
In normal times, this is pretty standard stuff. But in 2020, in this election, after arguably the worst presidential debate in history in which Trump literally exposed Biden to a life-threatening disease, it's a moment of note. Other leaders have been silent. Former President Barack Obama, normally the standard bearer for bridge-building decency on Twitter, has been silent.
After Biden's tweet, there was an understandable wave of concern over whether Biden himself could have contracted Covid-19, having been in such close proximity to Trump without a mask. Biden's team was quick to announce that he and his wife Jill Biden were being tested. Again, transparency, process and professionalism. All signs of normalcy that are decidedly abnormal in 2020.
Finally, a few hours later when Biden announced that he had tested negative, he used the moment not to raise money, push an agenda or score point but simply to remind his fellow Americans that the three basic principles to staying health during this pandemic apply to everyone from top to bottom: wear a mask, social distance and wash your hands.
I’m happy to report that Jill and I have tested negative for COVID. Thank you to everyone for your messages of conc… https://t.co/YjIRBgW6gt— Joe Biden (@Joe Biden)1601655763.0
While Biden's tweets were met with the expected wave of divisive, partisan and embarrassing responses from all political stripes, there were also a number of Americans relieved to see a leader simply being a leader during a moment of crisis. It's what Joe Biden does.
@JoeBiden Thank you for being such a good caring and compassionate example for the country, Joe.— Dana Goldberg (@Dana Goldberg)1601656232.0
@JoeBiden We need a responsible president who knows how to keep himself and the country safe.— Leslie S. Pumpkins 🎃🌊 (@Leslie S. Pumpkins 🎃🌊)1601655847.0
@JoeBiden Thank goodness. Thank you for modeling the best #COVID19 behavior!— Rep. Anna V. Eskamani 🔨 (@Rep. Anna V. Eskamani 🔨)1601656433.0
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