President Trump announced on Monday that a decision will come shortly about the reopening of the economy.
The president assured that the decision will be made in conjunction with the state governors along with other officials – opposing the widespread fake news it would be the governors alone who would make the decision.
“For the purpose of creating conflict and confusion, some in the Fake News Media are saying that it is the Governors decision to open up the states, not that of the President of the United States & the Federal Government,” Trump tweeted Monday.
“Let it be fully understood that this is incorrect. It is the decision of the President, and for many good reasons,” he continued. “With that being said, the Administration and I are working closely with the Governors, and this will continue.”
He added: “A decision by me, in conjunction with the Governors and input from others, will be made shortly!”
The president’s announcement comes as the “Opening our Country” task force continues being formed at the White House.
According to Fox News, the economic task force will be chaired by White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows.
Members of the president’s cabinet will also be included in the task force, as the following names are all expected to be a part of it:
- Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin
- Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross
- Agriculture Secretary Sonny Purdue
- Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao
- Energy Secretary Dan Brouillette
- Labor Secretary Gene Scalia
- Housing and Urban Development Secretary Ben Carson
- U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer
- Acting director of the Office of Management and Budget Russ Vought.
Additional members might include acting chair of the Council of Economic Advisors Tom Philipson and White House advisers Larry Kudlow, Peter Navarro, Chris Liddell, Jared Kushner and Ivanka Trump.
While it remains unclear as to whether or not people from outside of the government will be officially brought in to the task force, it is expected that at the very least they will be included in the consultation process.
On Friday, the president said he understands the gravity of the situation as he prepares to make a decision on whether to ease social distancing guidelines to open the economy, which has been largely shuttered in many states to curb transmission.
“I would say without question it’s the biggest decision I’ve ever had to make,” Trump said.
“It’s been my honor to be the president for the American people… I have a big decision coming up and I only hope to God it’s the right decision,” Trump said.
The president also vowed Friday to listen to experts should they recommend a further extension of the White House social distancing guidelines.
”We’re not doing anything until we know that this country is going to be healthy. We don’t want to go back and start doing it over again,” President Trump said.
With skyrocketing unemployment due to massive country-wide closures, experts project that the U.S. GDP will shrink by nearly 30% in the second quarter.
As of Monday, the U.S. reported more than 558,000 positive cases of COVID-19 and more than 22,100 deaths.