Pres. Trump Hopes To Re-Open The Economy By Easter

Clay Curtis
March 24, 2020

"I would love to have the country opened up and just raring to go by Easter".

Trump, in a Fox News virtual town hall, doubled down on his push to reopen businesses in a matter of weeks in order to reinvigorate the US economy amid the coronavirus outbreak.

"Wouldn't it be great to have all of the churches full?" "You're going to lose a number of people to the flu but you're going to lose more people by putting the country into a massive recession", he said.

Trump said his administration was developing new protocols for many local economies outside of what he called coronavirus "hot spots" - New York, California and Washington state - to resume economic and social activity.

"Our people want to return to work", he said on Twitter on Tuesday. Guidelines from the Center for Disease Control, as well as more severe directives from state and local authorities, have already thrust the USA economy into a severe recession as Americans remain largely confined to their homes and both large corporations and small businesses shed employees. "I guess by Monday or Tuesday, it's about two weeks". We lose much more than that to automobile accidents.

But Dr. Deborah Birx, the White House's coronavirus response coordinator, appeared less enthusiastic regarding the president's proposed Easter end date, and declined to directly answer whether such a deadline was realistic. "I wish that would stop and we'd look ahead at the challenge we have to pull together to get over this thing". "No, we've got to get it open, our people want it open and that's the way this country was built".

In recent days, the president has taken onboard the idea that too much isolation and too much mitigation could be too ruinous for the economy, saying the "cure" can't be worse than the disease.

The reassessment comes as the White House is encouraging lawmakers on Capitol Hill to pass a roughly US$2 trillion ($3.4t) stimulus package to ease the financial pain for Americans and hard-hit industries.

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It will take time, but hopefully, all around the world, people get better. We've just got to go on and try to get the world fixed".

Mr Trump's enthusiasm for getting people back to work comes as he takes stock of the political toll the outbreak is taking. "So, I'm going to keep pushing".

"That's the person I trust, that's the person Americans trust".

"When I have made recommendations he has taken them".

Trump and his economic and health advisers are mulling how to proceed after the 15-day period of tough measures to slow the pandemic.

"That's the key point".

During a private conference call with roughly 30 conservative leaders, Pence reinforced Trump's eagerness to lift coronavirus-related work and travel restrictions "in a matter of weeks, not months".

He said he would make a decision at the conclusion of his previously announced "15 Days to Slow the Spread" plan which was unveiled on March 16.

Pence told the group that accommodations would need to be made for the highest-risk populations if and when restrictions begin to be lifted. "It's been very painful for our country and very destabilizing", he said.

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