Economy/Government

Trump: ‘It is the decision of the president’ to order states to reopen, not governors

President Donald J. Trump drops-by a roundtable with Vice President Mike Pence and CEOs in the Cabinet Room of the White House Monday, March 30, 2020, to discuss public-private partnership efforts to respond to the COVID-19 coronavirus outbreak. (Official White House Photo.)

(USA Features) President Donald Trump noted on social media Monday that it is a mistake to think that state governors have the ultimate authority to decide when to reopen their economies in light of the coronavirus pandemic.

Rather, he said, that authority rests with him alone.

Over the weekend, Governor Greg Abbott of Texas announced that he would issue an executive order this week on re-opening business. Meanwhile, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo said Monday that he was working with Connecticut and New Jersey to plan a regional opening of the economy.

It wasn’t clear which reports the president was responding to. But under the Constitution, the federal government has extensive authority to regulate interstate commerce.




In fact, a number of Supreme Court decisions over the years have interpreted the authority to mean that the federal government has virtually unlimited powers over economic matters, even if they don’t have much of a direct impact on commerce between the states.

“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. Let it be fully understood that this is incorrect,” the president wrote on Twitter.

“It is the decision of the President, and for many good reasons. With that being said, the Administration and I are working closely with the Governors, and this will continue,” he continued.

“A decision by me, in conjunction with the Governors and input from others, will be made shortly!” he said.


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