The tactic is clearly a desperate hedge against their own culpability since Senate Republicans exclusively voted to keep Trump at the helm right as the global pandemic was bearing down on the U.S. But now that Trump is advising Americans to drink bleach (don't drink bleach, by the way) rather than developing a national testing plan so that states can safely reopen their economies, Senate Republicans need to divert the public attention away from the death and destruction they helped ensure would come to fruition.
In actuality, the memo, penned by a GOP strategist, was dated April 17, suggesting that as early as a couple weeks ago Senate Republicans were already super alarmed by the direction the nation was headed and their chances for reelection.
“Coronavirus was a Chinese hit-and-run followed by a cover-up that cost thousands of lives,” the memo states. It goes on to urge GOP candidates to stay super disciplined and focused on that message, avoiding any questions whatsoever about Trump's culpability for spread of the coronavirus.
Along with their Sino-scapegoating, Republicans will push the notion that Democrats would be "soft on China" and Republicans would alternatively get tough on it with new sanctions. The memo also offers ways to defend against accusations that the Republican tack is racist by clarifying that they're not attacking Chinese Americans but rather "the Chinese Communist Party for covering up the virus and lying about its danger."
“No one has suffered more from the murderous Communist Chinese Party dictatorship than the people of China,” the memo continues. “We stand with them against their corrupt government that caused this pandemic.”
Naturally, the biggest hurdle to Republicans' foolproof finger-pointing scam is Trump himself. Trump's posture toward China has been nothing but herky-jerky over the last several months, praising China one moment, skewering it the next, then reverting back to flattery all over again.
That's not going to change. Not only has Trump proven incapable of staying consistent on China, he also owes a state-owned Chinese bank tens of millions of dollars for refinancing several of his properties.
So good luck, Senate GOP. You got America into this mess—it's only right that Trump sinks your ship right alongside his own.