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NEJM Weighs in on US Election

The current US leadership is "dangerously incompetent" and has "recklessly squandered lives and money," the New England Journal of Medicine writes in an editorial. This, the Washington Post notes, is the first time in more than two centuries that the journal has weighed in on an election in the US

In an indignant editorial, the NEJM outlines the failures of the Trump Administration's response to the COVID-19 pandemic. It writes, for instance, that the US has stumbled at nearly every stage of pandemic response, from being unable to test effectively early on to still not testing as often as needed and from not providing needed protective equipment to loosely enforcing social distancing and mask wearing. Even as the US has funded vaccine research, the NEJM says the government's rhetoric has undermined that work.

"Our current leaders have undercut trust in science and in government, causing damage that will certainly outlast them," the editorial says. "Instead of relying on expertise, the administration has turned to uninformed 'opinion leaders' and charlatans who obscure the truth and facilitate the promulgation of outright lies."

The NEJM further urges voting the current leadership out.

CNN notes that NEJM isn't the first science-focused publication to break with tradition and weigh in on this year's US election. Last month, Scientific American endorsed former Vice President Joe Biden, saying he better respected science and evidence, after not making such an endorsement in its 175-year history.