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Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan (R) expressed confusion on CNN's "State of the Union" Sunday about President Trump's calls on Twitter to "LIBERATE" several states from coronavirus lockdowns last week, claiming he's contradicting the federal government's own plan for governors.

Why it matters: Hundreds of Americans violated social distancing orders over the weekend to hold protests opposing state closures of businesses and schools. Trump encouraged them to do so in Minnesota, Michigan and Virginia — three states with Democratic governors.

What he's saying: "I don't think it's helpful to encourage demonstrations and encourage people to go against the president's own policy," Hogan said.

  • "The president's policy says you can't start to reopen under his plan until you have declining numbers for 14 days, which those states and my state do not have. So then to encourage people to go protest the plan that you just made recommendations on Thursday — it just doesn't make any sense."
  • Hogan added that he understands the frustration of living under a lockdown, and he said that state governments are "doing everything we possibly can to reopen in a safe manner."

Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam (D), one of the governors who Trump has targeted, said on CNN that "this is not the time for protests, this is not the time for divisiveness. This is time for leadership that will stand up and provide empathy. It's the time for truth."

Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer (D) didn't respond directly to Trump, but said on CNN regarding the protests: "The hard part of public health is when you're doing a good job, you're saving lives, and it's hard to quantify precisely what that looks like."

  • "But we know that this curve was steep at the trajectory we were headed and now it looks as though it's starting to flatten," she continued. "These efforts are making a difference in saving lives. We've got to continue doing that."

Washington Gov. Jay Inslee (D) called the tweets "dangerous" and claimed that they encouraged "illegal activity."

  • "To have an American president encourage people to violate the law — I can't remember any time during my time in America where we have seen such a thing. It is dangerous because it can inspire people to ignore things that actually can save their lives. And I don't know that there's another way to characterize it."

The other side: Vice President Mike Pence claimed on "Fox News Sunday" that Trump's tweets, which many have argued are inciting unrest in these states, are meant to “encourage governors to find ways to safely and responsibly let America go back to work.”

Go deeper ... In photos: Americans gather to protest social distancing

Go deeper

CCP releases two jailed Canadians after Huawei CFO deal with DOJ

Photo: Sheldon Cooper/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

Two Canadians imprisoned by the Chinese government for over 1,000 days have been released and are expected to arrive in Canada on Saturday, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said Friday.

Why it matters: Their release comes hours after Huawei Technologies CFO Meng Wanzhou reached a deal with the U.S. Department of Justice that resolves the criminal charges against her and could pave the way for her to return to China.

Updated 13 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Arizona GOP's private recount of 2020 election confirms Biden's win

Contractors working on behalf of the GOP examine and recount 2020 ballots at Arizona Veterans Memorial Coliseum in Phoenix in May. Photo: Courtney Pedroza/Getty Images

In an odd coda to the 2020 election, private contractors conducting a GOP-commissioned recount in Arizona confirmed President Biden’s win in Maricopa County.

Why it matters: The unofficial, party-driven recount has been heavily covered on cable news as part of former President Trump's continued effort to sow doubt about the election result.

Del Rio bridge camp empty following Haitian migrant surge

A boy bathes himself in a jug of water inside a migrant camp at the U.S.-Mexico border on Sept. 21 in Del Rio, Texas. Photo: John Moore/Getty Images

The last migrants camping under the Del Rio International Bridge, which connects Texas and Mexico, departed on Friday, Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas announced during a White House press briefing.

Driving the news: Thousands of migrants, mostly from Haiti, had arrived to the makeshift camp after crossing the southern border seeking asylum. Roughly 1,800 migrants will now head to U.S. Customs and Border Protection processing centers.