Swing states become partisan battlegrounds in America’s fight against Covid-19
States such as Michigan and Wisconsin helped bring Donald Trump to power in 2016. How they handle the pandemic may well be crucial this November too
They were the battleground states that handed the White House keys to Donald Trump by a whisker. Now they are the battleground states of the coronavirus pandemic, microcosms of a crisis that, far from bringing America together, threatens to tear it apart.
Michigan, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin formed the blue wall that crumbled in 2016 as Hillary Clinton lost them by a combined total of fewer than 80,000 votes (0.06% of 137m votes cast). Each is led by a Democratic governor whose lockdown orders, while mitigating the spread of the virus, could shape the US president’s race with Joe Biden in 2020.