Disunited states of America: responses to coronavirus shaped by hyper-partisan politics

Democratic states have tended to be more proactive while some Republican governors followed Trump in downplaying the crisis

It was a tale of two beaches. On Florida’s Atlantic coast, at the height of spring break season, the sand was deserted in the cities of Miami Beach and Fort Lauderdale, where Democratic mayors had imposed closures to fight the spread of coronavirus.

Across the narrow neck of the state, the Gulf coast beaches in Clearwater were a world apart. There the Republican mayor had declined to impose a closure, and photos that would circle the world captured the result: thousands of carefree sunbathers lining the sand and mingling in the water.

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