President Trump on Thursday laid out his plan for the next phase in the war against the coronavirus pandemic that has killed over 1,000 Americans and crushed the booming economy.
The Trump administration issued new guidelines for state and local governments to use when making decisions about “maintaining, increasing or relaxing social distancing and other mitigation measures” for COVID-19.
In a letter to U.S. governors, the president said that his administration would be easing nationwide guidelines meant to stem the spread of the disease and working on new guidelines to rate counties by risk of virus spread.
While states and municipalities will still have the authority to set whatever restrictions they deem necessary, the president has made clear that he is anxious to to see U.S. businesses reopen.
During his press briefing on Tuesday, Trump said he would love to open the country back up by Easter.
White House counselor Kellyanne Conway said the president, by setting the Easter goal, was trying to give people “hope.”
“I think, Easter, the president was giving people a lot of hope and basically telling us it won’t last forever, and we’ll see what happens over time,” she told reporters Thursday.
“Every day that we stay out it gets harder to bring it back very quickly,” Trump said during his Thursday press conference.
White House health advisor Dr. Anthony Fauci said Thursday that once the country “turns that corner” and the spread of the coronavirus has been reduced, we “can start thinking about getting back to some degree of normality.”
Trump stressed that Americans will still need to practice social distancing “even when we’re open and fully operational,” just not to the same extent “because you still have to lead a life.”