Update (1125ET): President Trump was so excited about Gov Whitmer's order, you'd think the White House was in Detroit.
LIBERATE MICHIGAN!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) April 17, 2020
He also tweeted 'Liberate Minnesota' as the state's low numbers have made its reopening the subject of a national conversation.
LIBERATE MINNESOTA!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) April 17, 2020
After pulling off a political miracle in handing responsibility for the reopening over to the governors - making them responsible for any failings while still allowing Trump to take credit for any wins - Trump is now sabotaging himself by appearing to meddle once again in the process.
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Less than one full day has passed since President Trump officially delegated responsibility for reopening their economies to the states, and to our surprise, it appears the first governor to start pushing for a May 1 target to begin reopening is Michigan's Gretchen Whitmer.
Michigan has reported a sudden acceleration in deaths in recent days partially thanks to a wave of outbreaks at nursing homes in the state. Michigan also joined a group of 7 Midwestern states which announced yesterday a plan to start a coordinated reopening on May 15.
Grateful to partner with @GovPritzker, @GovMikeDeWine, @GovEvers, @GovTimWalz, @GovHolcomb & @GovAndyBeshear in taking a bipartisan, fact-based, data-driven approach to reopening our economy in a way that protects families from the #COVID19 spread. More: https://t.co/IDi2PYWNcV pic.twitter.com/yfet4rkMoF— Governor Gretchen Whitmer (@GovWhitmer) April 16, 2020
Earlier this week, a group of protesters swarmed the Michigan capital in Lansing, demanding that Whitmer, who has clashed with Trump earlier in the US outbreak, move to reopen the state ASAP.
Here's what the state's "curve" currently looks like:
Whitmer's decision is such a surprise, that this Democratic pollster tweeted data purporting to show that the state's residents "agreed" with Whitmer's decision to hold off on reopening.
I think what the media is missing here is MI residents are with @govwhitmer here. She not only has a 71% job rating but over 60% of voters feel the worse is yet to come and a majority worry that social distancing will end too soon. Real people get it https://t.co/xi199BJIfs— John Anzalone (@JohnAnzo) April 17, 2020
But it looks like people who actually live in the state are just excited by prospect of the stay at home order being eased in 13 days.
And instead of announcing this new plan in an official release, she said it during an interview on ABC's "Good Morning America."
Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer said Friday that she hopes to be in a position to ease her state’s strict stay-at-home order by May 1, although she warned that it must be a decision based on scientific data to prevent a second wave of the coronavirus. "I do hope to have some relaxing come May 1, but it's two weeks away and the information and the data and our ability to test is changing so rapidly, it's hard to tell you precisely where we'll be in a week from now, much less two," Whitmer said in an interview on ABC’s "Good Morning America."
Watch the clip below:
No matter what happens, Whitmer said the social distancing guidelines will be with us for the foreseeable future, and people need to remember: "It's better to be six feet apart than six feet under."
And while she is the first governor to talk dates since Trump released his guidelines last night, as we noted yesterday, a handful of governors have already discussed plans that would use May 1 as the start date, including the governors of Ohio and North Dakota.
I am an optimist and am confident that Ohioans will also live up to the challenge of doing things differently as we open back up beginning on May 1st.— Governor Mike DeWine (@GovMikeDeWine) April 16, 2020