News & Politics

Don't Buy the Misleading Figures. Here's the Real Story About How the U.S. Matches Up on Coronavirus Deaths

President Donald Trump speaks about the coronavirus in the James Brady Press Briefing Room of the White House, Thursday, April 16, 2020, in Washington. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

The sheer ease with which the American left has politicized the deaths of thousands of Americans has shocked even me. The United States is approaching 100,000 deaths and the left seems determined to make sure the public blames President Donald Trump for those deaths. As PJM’s Tyler O’Neil noted, the Democratic Coalition is trying to make “Trump Death Toll” a thing. While Tyler effectively demonstrated the absurdity of blaming these deaths on Trump, I’m going to show that despite the headlines that suggest things in the United States are the worst in the world, that is emphatically not the case.

First, let’s take a look at the total confirmed deaths of the ten worst-hit countries in descending order (based on the numbers from the Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins University as of 9:30 am ET May 24).

  1. USA (96,046)
  2. UK (36,757)
  3. Italy (32,735)
  4. Spain (28,678)
  5. France (28,218)
  6. Brazil (22,013)
  7. Belgium (9,280)
  8. Germany (8,275)
  9. Iran (7,417)
  10. Netherlands (5,841)

But, here’s what happens when you adjust these numbers per capita. The following countries are arranged in descending order by their coronavirus death rate per million people (based on population data from The CIA World Factbook).

  1. Belgium (791.76)
  2. Spain (573.38)
  3. UK (558.95)
  4. Italy (524.58)
  5. France (415.90)
  6. Sweden (391.87)
  7. Netherlands (338.01)
  8. Ireland (309.86)
  9. USA  (288.74)
  10. Switzerland (226.80)

It makes an amazing difference, doesn’t it? The United States dropped from number 1 to number 9 once you adjusted for population. Oh, but wait! I’ve previously documented how the United States’ coronavirus numbers are skewed by downstate New York. So, here’s the same list as above, treating downstate New York as a separate country from the rest of the United States:

  1. Downstate NY (1,771.86)
  2. Belgium (791.76)
  3. Spain (573.38)
  4. UK (558.95)
  5. Italy (524.58)
  6. France (415.90)
  7. Sweden (391.87)
  8. Netherlands (338.01)
  9. Ireland (309.86)
  10. USA sans downstate NY (233.44)

Once you separate downstate New York from the rest of the United States, it jumps to the top (by a long shot), while the rest of the United States is at the bottom—barely edging out Switzerland.

It should be noted here that several countries are reportedly undercounting both cases and deaths, including Iran, China, and Russia. It’s very possible that the actual case and death numbers for these countries are much higher, possibly even putting them in the top ten, but without reliable data I can’t correct for this.

As usual, the media wants the public to believe that the situation in the United States is worse than anywhere else in order to make Trump look bad. The United States approaching 100,000 coronavirus deaths is a grim milestone to be sure, but these deaths should not be politicized. Trump’s response was quick and decisive, and likely saved thousands of lives.

RELATED: The Coronavirus Timeline Liberals Don’t Want You To See

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Matt Margolis is the author of Trumping Obama: How President Trump Saved Us From Barack Obama’s Legacy and the bestselling book The Worst President in History: The Legacy of Barack Obama. You can follow Matt on Twitter @MattMargolis

Here’s How Much New York City Is Skewing America’s Coronavirus Numbers