Yet a new poll shows that, outside the Beltway, the coronavirus crisis is actually bringing Americans together on the China issue. Republicans and Democrats now largely agree that the Chinese government bears responsibility for the spread of the pandemic, that it can’t be trusted on this or any other issue, and that the U.S. government should maintain a tough position on China on trade and overall, especially if Beijing again falters in its commitments.

“It’s as much of a consensus issue as you can get in today’s divided world,” said Mark Penn, chairman of the Harris Poll. “Overall, there’s very little trust for anything that the Chinese government says or does, especially its premier. Xi Jinping has less than half the credibility of President Trump in this poll.”

Of the nationally representative sample of 1,993 American adults Harris surveyed online between April 3 and April 5, a net total of 23 percent said Xi, the Chinese president, was a trustworthy source of information related to the covid-19 outbreak, with Republicans and Democrats closely aligned. The White House and the U.S. media rated 53 and 60 percent in trustworthiness, respectively, with Republicans tending to support the former and Democrats the latter.