Mar 28, 2020 - Politics & Policy

Trump says he advises coronavirus task force not to contact unappreciative governors

In this image, Trump speaks at the White House

President Trump briefs reports at the White House on March 27. Photo: Jim Watson/AFP via Getty Images

"If they don't treat you right, I don't call," President Trump told reporters at the White House coronavirus task force briefing on Friday, referring to U.S. governors battling the spread of COVID-19.

What he's saying: Trump said that while "generally speaking," the nation's governors have been appreciative of his administration's efforts to combat the spread of COVID-19, there are some — including Washington Gov. Jay Inslee and Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer — who the task force should not bother contacting.

  • "All I want them to do, very simple, I want them to be appreciative. I don't want them to say things that aren't true, I want them to be appreciative. We've done a great job," Trump said on Friday.
  • When discussing Vice President Mike Pence's efforts on the task force, Trump said: "He calls all the governors, I tell him, I mean I'm a different type of person, I say Mike, don't call the governor of Washington, you're wasting your time with him. Don't call the woman in Michigan ... if they don't treat you right, I don't call. He's a different type of person."
  • The White House declined to comment.

Flashback: Trump singled out Inslee and Whitmer during an interview with Fox News' Sean Hannity on Thursday, saying neither of them were doing enough to tackle COVID-19, the New York Times reports.

  • New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo rebutted Trump’s comments on Friday that Washington state had overlooked thousands of ventilators found in storage, the Times reports.

Driving the news: Some of the latest federal efforts to offset the medical and economic fallout from COVID-19 are a $2.2 trillion stimulus package signed into law by Trump on Friday, and the appointment of White House trade adviser Peter Navarro to enforce the Defense Production Act.

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