Kristin Urquiza isn't running for the House of Representatives or the Senate. She isn't a governor or up-and-coming mayor. But her speech on the first night of the Democratic National Convention was one of its most moving.
Kristin lost her father, Mark, in June to COVID-19. In her speech, she shared how it wouldn't have happened if President Trump and his "mouthpieces" spoke honestly about the seriousness of the pandemic.
"He had faith in Donald Trump," she said. "[He] listened to him, believed him and his mouthpieces when they said that coronavirus was under control and going to disappear; that it was OK to end social distancing rules before it was safe and that if you had no underlying health conditions."
Kristin Urquiza speech at the Democratic Convention | Joe Biden For President 2020 www.youtube.com
Mark went out to a karaoke bar in May, right after the state of Arizona prematurely reopened businesses, and contracted COVID-19. He was placed on a ventilator and died June 30.
"After five agonizing days, he died alone in the ICU with a nurse holding his hand," she said.
Dealing with the death of a family member is devastating for anyone, but for the Urquiza family it was even worse because they couldn't comfort him while he was in the hospital.
Kristen said goodbye to him over Facetime.
"One of the last things that my father said to me was that he felt betrayed by the likes of Donald Trump," Urquiza said. "And so, when I cast my vote for Joe Biden, I will do it for my dad."
Urquiza belives that Trump didn't cause the virus, "but his dishonesty and his irresponsible actions made it so much worse."
"The coronavirus has made clear that there are two Americas: the America that Donald Trump lives in and the America that my father died in," she said.
Trump's False Statements on COVID-19 Testing, A Supercut | NowThis www.youtube.com
Kristen's testimony was powerful because it proves that there are real-world consequences when people in power lie.
Trump has been one of the most dishonest politicians in recent history. As of July 2020, The Washington Post has counted Trump lying over 20,000 times. Even though it's blatantly obvious to most people in the country that he shouldn't be trusted on any issue — let alone a deadly pandemic — there are millions who still take his word as gospel.
A recent poll by NBC News found that "58 percent of Americans say they don't trust what Trump has said about the pandemic, while 31 percent say they do trust his comments."
Trump's reckless dishonesty makes him an accomplice to the deaths of tens of thousands of people, one of them being Mark Urquiza.
In early February, Trump claimed the virus would weaken "when we get to April, in the warmer weather." Later that month, he said it would "disappear" one day, "like a miracle."
In June, he claimed the virus was "fading away" and in July it was "under control."
Kristin Urquiza will long be remembered for putting a face to the COVID-19 pandemic. Let's hope that her tragic story will make those in power think a second time before lying about serious, life-or-death issues.
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