Visions of vaccines, bracing for Biden: Weekend Reads

Balance of Power
Bloomberg

Pollsters predicted Democrat Joe Biden would win the presidency, but there's still much they got wrong about how the Nov. 3 vote would pan out. 

Even as President Donald Trump refuses to concede, the rest of the world is increasingly recalibrating for a Biden administration. 

And advances toward a coronavirus vaccine belie obstacles still ahead.

Dig into these and other topics with the latest edition of Weekend Reads.  — Kathleen Hunter

A glass medical vaccine vial in dry ice vapor in an arranged photograph in Wurzburg, Germany, on Nov. 18.

Photographer: Alex Kraus/Bloomberg

Freezers required to store Covid-19 vaccines are in place at health systems that are preparing to administer the initial doses once the two leading candidates for shots receive a green light from regulators. 

Click here for more of this week's most compelling political images, and tell us how we're doing or what we're missing at balancepower@bloomberg.net.

Trump's Latino Support Was Overlooked by Pollsters That Lack Diversity
Minorities are routinely underrepresented and misunderstood by the polling industry. Maria Eloisa Capurro explores why 2020 predictions went so wrong, particularly with the Latino vote in key states.

'Shy Trump Voters' Re-Emerge as Explanation for Pollsters' Miss
The president's unexpectedly strong election showing is reviving the notion of the so-called shy Trump voter. Gregory Korte takes a closer look at why pollsters consistently under-registered Trump support for the second time in four years. 

Year-End Fiscal Cliffs Are Approaching for Millions of Americans
A whole range of pandemic aid programs is set to expire in the new year, leaving millions of Americans without the government support that's helped keep them afloat. And, as Reade Pickert and Olivia Rockeman report, that's threatening to hold back a rebounding economy.

Brexit Britain Collides With Irish Soft Power in Washington
Ireland is the European Union member with the most to lose from Brexit. Yet, as Dara Doyle and Billy House explain, Dublin has the ear of powerful American allies who could make life difficult for U.K. Prime Minister Boris Johnson as he seeks to strengthen transatlantic economic ties.

After Trump's Embrace, Saudi Arabia May Find Biden Is Not So Bad
Under Trump, Saudi Arabia got all the attention it could have wanted from the U.S. — and more. While a Biden presidency looks certain to end the lovefest, the kingdom's leaders may not mind as much as one might think. Nick Wadhams and Vivian Nereim explain why. 

The Chinese president pledged that Beijing wouldn't engage in decoupling, in an address to Asia-Pacific leaders in Kuala Lumpur just days after the region inaugurated the world's largest free-trade agreement.

Crackdowns Everywhere Show Xi Strengthening Party Grip on China
The past few weeks have shown Xi can move extremely fast when he hones in on long-term threats to the Communist Party. And right now they revolve around the convergence of technology, finance and Hong Kong.

Unfreezing the Everest Economy After Virus Hits Tallest Mountain
Nepal has lifted a seven-month travel ban and is welcoming climbers again. But will they come? Pablo Robles looks at efforts to restart the economy that revolves around Mount Everest. 

A porter carries supplies from Lukla to Namche in the Everest region on Nov. 2.

Photographer: Rajneesh Bhandari/Bloomberg

Sunak Starts U.K.'s Reckoning With Ruinous Legacy of Pandemic
Rishi Sunak will this week begin grappling with Britain's most challenging fiscal blowout since World War II, in what will ultimately become the defining test of his tenure as chancellor of the exchequer, Alex Morales and David Goodman report. 

U.S. Vow of Early Afghan Exit Raises Threat of Resurgent Taliban
Afghanistan's government is struggling to maintain its grip on power after Trump's decision to accelerate a U.S. troop withdrawal from the war-torn nation emboldened the Taliban and other militant groups. Eltaf Najafizada takes a look at the fallout. 

And finally ...  Just 45% of U.S. consumers plan to go to a shopping mall this Christmas season, down from 64% who visited last November and December. And that's put store Santa's out of work. Even Macy's, the iconic department-store chain whose 34th Street flagship in Manhattan is the setting for the most famous Santa movie ever, has announced that the jolly old elf won't be visiting because of the pandemic.

Santa Ric Erwin, in Hemet, Calif., spreads some Zoom-mas cheer.

Photographer: Tag Christof for Bloomberg Businessweek

 

 

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