Apr 14, 2020 - Politics & Policy

Trump says he will be "authorizing" governors to reopen states

President Trump said during the coronavirus briefing on Tuesday that individual governors would decide when to reopen their respective state economies.

What he's saying: "I will be speaking to all 50 governors very shortly," Trump said. "And I will then be authorizing each individual governor of each individual state to implement a reopening, a very powerful reopening plan of their state at a time and in a manner as most appropriate."

"The governors will be very, very respectful of the presidency. ... You can talk about constitution. You can talk about federalism. You can talk about whatever you want. But the best way, I am talking now from a managerial standpoint, to let individual governors run individual states and come to us if they have difficulty and we will help them."

Our thought bubble, per Axios' Margaret Talev: Trump appears to be walking back his Monday statement, when said he would force governors to reopen quickly during the coronavirus crisis because, as president, his "authority is total" — sparking backlash from several governors.

Of note: The state governors are independent of the president. The 10th Amendment to the Constitution gives states "police powers" to regulate behavior during a public health crisis.

Editor's note: This article has been updated with new details throughout.

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