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Photo: Alex Wong/Getty Images

Laying out his plans to combat the coronavirus during a speech on Tuesday, Joe Biden stared into the camera, addressed President Trump and questioned his fitness to lead the nation: "America needs a president."

The state of play: The former vice president pleaded with Trump to wear a mask, institute a national plan for reopening the country and economy, and unite the American people amid the pandemic.

  • "The crisis is real and it’s surging, Mr. President. America knows that this crisis isn’t behind us, even if you don’t," Biden said.
  • "The American people didn’t make enormous sacrifices over the past four months so you could waste your time with late-night rantings and tweets," he added.

The big picture: Biden used the address in Wilmington, Delaware, with a giant American flag as his backdrop, to explain how he would handle the coronavirus differently than Trump.

  • His coronavirus plan was an updated version of the one he first unveiled in March, but he salted it with criticism of what the president has done since then and focused on the country's rising caseload.
  • He also promised to keep Anthony Fauci in government to help him respond to the crisis.

The other side: The Trump campaign fired back and said Biden "botched" his criticism.

  • "The United States leads the world in coronavirus testing, with more than 22 million tests completed and nearly half a million new tests being conducted per day," the Trump campaign said in an email blast.
  • Reality check: Public health experts have argued that the country needs to reach 900,000 tests per day in order to reach targets necessary to begin containing the virus.

Go deeper

Top medical journal calls for U.S. leaders to be voted out over COVID response

Photo: Win McNamee/Getty Images

Editors of the prestigious New England Journal of Medicine on Wednesday published a scathing rebuke of the Trump administration over its "astonishing" failure to respond to the coronavirus pandemic, writing that "this election gives us the power to render judgment" of current U.S. leadership.

Why it matters: The world's top medical journal has never before condemned or supported a political candidate, according to the New York Times, making Wednesday's editorial a first in the publication's 208-year history.

Oct 8, 2020 - Health

Coronavirus infections rise in 23 states and D.C.

Expand chart
Data: The COVID Tracking Project, state health departments; Map: Andrew Witherspoon, Sara Wise/Axios

The pace of coronavirus infections increased last week in 23 states plus Washington, D.C., and only declined in four states and Puerto Rico.

The big picture: The virus is not under control, or anywhere close to it.

Updated Oct 7, 2020 - Politics & Policy

White House physician says Trump has been "symptom-free for over 24 hours"

Photo: Jabin Botsford/The Washington Post via Getty Images

President Trump has been "symptom-free" from the coronavirus for over 24 hours, White House physician Sean Conley said in a Wednesday update.

The state of play: Conley's letter also says that Trump has not received or needed supplemental oxygen since his initial hospitalization and that lab tests on Monday showed the president has signs of coronavirus antibodies in his blood that were not present last Thursday.