Four years ago Barry Bledsoe hopped on his Harley-Davidson and crossed the Appalachian Mountains to attend the Republican National Convention in Cleveland, where Donald Trump he was sworn in as a conservative candidate for the White House, the first step in the most unlikely political pirouette in recent history. Bledsoe was part of the noisy West Virginia delegation, visible for a league from the miners’ helmets their delegates wore. But that triumphant party is now far away. Last month, this 56-year-old paramedic, father of six children, had to follow the conclave of his party prostrate at home and connected to an oxygen bottle, after spending 17 days in the hospital fighting COVID-19. Eight of them sedated in the ICU.