I think this is where the real failing is. Scientists and other specialists are supposed to provide data (with context) to politicians. They might also be asked to advise on policy, but many different experts would be asked to do the same. Politicians are supposed to be the policy wonks who would take all of the recommendations from different advisors and devise effective policies -- policies that would also workable in the sense that they would know what they could sell to their constituencies, what compromises would need to be made to make sure the solutions weren't one-sided, etc.
There is a difference between science/fact/data and policy. Policy should be the domain of politicians, not scientists or science advisors. There has been too much crossover between science reporting and policy recommendations in public (I'm ignoring blatant debacles like the masks = bad, masks = good and just referring to basic information). Advisors should not be out in public making recommendations ... that should be done in private to politicians who are tasked with making policy. They can answer questions that clarify findings but once they cross the line into making policy recommendations, IMO they are out of their depth because they are only making recommendations based on their own field. I include all specialists in this criticism (economists, mental health professionals, educators, financial advisors, etc).
I think the lack of separation between science and policy is the biggest conundrum right now. It's understandable that scientists felt drawn into the void left by non-functioning political leadership, but in the end their credibility might suffer more from wading into policy territory. Don't take this as an endorsement of Trump or anyone else though. Very few politicians have demonstrated effective leadership (even Cuomo doesn't know what de Blasio is doing half the time) and very few scientists/experts have resisted the temptation to offer policy advice.
The covid problem is enormous and most of what's been suggested includes some kind of value judgement, making the solutions somewhat subjective. Policy is hard, and not the forte of most scientists. Unfortunately, it's not the forte of most politicians either at the moment. The morass is confusing people. And killing them.