Trump is losing his battle in the court of public opinion. Finally, it seems Americans, and more specifically North Dakotans, are realizing that Donald Trump might not be fit to hold another term as President of the United States. The first sign of Trump’s distress are is his sinking poll numbers.

National polls comparing Trump to Joe Biden, the presumptive Democratic nominee for president, have the former vice president leading ten points ahead. Even his base of white evangelical voters is slipping. In July of last year, Trump had the support of 78 percent of the group, and now that number has slipped to only 69 percent.

But for North Dakotans, the president’s handling of the COVID-19 pandemic has shown a dangerous lack of leadership. New polling by the One Country Project (OCP) shows sentiment towards President Trump has turned against him in the Peace Garden state, due in part to his decision to hold a rally in Tulsa, Oklahoma in the midst of a pandemic.

There, he proudly announced he asked administration officials to “slow the testing down, please.” At a time when the United States has the most confirmed cases and deaths from COVID-19 in the entire world, the public response to his comment was not positive. It’s probably a good thing the event had an embarrassing turnout, with only about 6,200 supporters (of an expected size of over a million) coming to see the president.

The social listening by OCP also shows Trump’s decision not to enforce masks and social distancing at his Tulsa rally contributed to the tide turning against him, because… duh. North Dakotans, even the staunchest Trump supporters, realize COVID-19 is a real and dangerous virus that infects people without discrimination. With over 3,000 cases and 77 dead in our state alone, the ignorance of the truth and science does not pass any test.

This drop in support resulted from ONE event the president held over the course of ONE day. But President Trump continues to mishandle the nation’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic week after week. After his comment about slowing down testing, he said he was joking, but then said he wasn’t. But either way, joking about a test that could mean the difference between life and death is no laughing matter. Americans aren’t looking for a Comedian in Chief, they want a Commander in Chief.

The president has made his presidency synonymous with “making America great again” but the only thing he’s doing to America is soiling our reputation as the best country in the world. And it is – when we have a leader who understands the enormous responsibility of being President of the United States. America is great when it provides for all citizens – regardless of their wealth, political party, or race. North Dakotans are starting to realize this is not the president our country needs or deserves. The first step to truly making America great again is voting Donald Trump out of office in November – lives depend on it.

Tessa Gould