New England Journal of Medicine calls on US leadership to be voted out over pandemic response
Donald Trump in the Rose Garden of the White House. (Official White House Photo by Shealah Craighead)

On Wednesday, CNN reported that the New England Journal of Medicine, the nation's foremost medical journal, called for U.S. leadership to resign over the COVID-19 pandemic response — an unprecedented move for the apolitical publication.

The editorial does not endorse a candidate, but singles out the Trump administration's failures.

"This crisis has produced a test of leadership. With no good options to combat a novel pathogen, countries were forced to make hard choices about how to respond," said the editorial. "Here in the United States, our leaders have failed that test. They have taken a crisis and turned it into a tragedy."

"Anyone else who recklessly squandered lives and money in this way would be suffering legal consequences," continued the editorial. "Our leaders have largely claimed immunity for their actions. But this election gives us the power to render judgment. When it comes to the response to the largest public health crisis of our time, our current political leaders have demonstrated that they are dangerously incompetent. We should not abet them and enable the deaths of thousands more Americans by allowing them to keep their jobs."

President Donald Trump has broadly been criticized for being slow to act in the pandemic, and sending mixed messages about following the guidelines of his own administration's medical experts. He caused a fresh wave of outrage on Tuesday by appearing to slam the door on stimulus talks — which would likely trigger more economic hardship and greater pressure to reopen businesses prematurely — before seeming to suggest he was still open to it.