- The White House is reportedly seeking to reopen as much of the US economy it can get open by April 30, the deadline for the end of strict social distancing measures.
- Trump earlier suggested opening the economy back up on April 12, but pushed it back after public health officials urged him to do so.
- The president has repeatedly said “the cure can’t be worse than the problem itself.”
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The Trump administration is reportedly seeking to reopen the US economy as much as possible by April 30, according to the Washington Post. That’s the deadline for the end of strict social distancing measures President Trump put in place to fight the coronavirus pandemic.
Citing four people familiar with the planning, the Post reported Trump is slated to announce the creation of a second coronavirus task force tasked with setting a date to reopen the economy. It would include a blend of top government and private-sector officials.
Some people on the task force could include Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, National Economic Council Director Larry Kudlow, and former chair of Trump’s Council of Economic Advisors Kevin Hassett, the Post reported.
The White House appears to be tilting in that direction. In a CNBC interview on Thursday, Mnuchin said much of the economy could be open for business in May.
“As soon as the president feels comfortable with the medical issues, we are making everything necessary that American companies and American workers can be open for business,” Mnuchin said.
Federal officials shut down a substantial portion of economic activity over the past month in a bid to prevent the spread of the coronavirus, throwing the country into what could be a painful recession.
During that stretch of time, Trump has been eager to reopen the economy and restore a sense of normalcy. He earlier suggested ending the shutdown on April 12, as he said last month, “the cure can’t be worse than the problem itself.”
He relented after public health officials urged him it was too soon to move that way. At a press conference on Thursday, Trump declined to set a firm date to reopen the economy, CBS News reported.
Last Saturday, Trump reiterated his longtime goal at another press conference.
“We have to open our country. You know, I had an expression: ‘The cure can’t be worse than the problem itself.’ Right? I started by saying that, and I continue to say it… we’ve got to get our country open,” he said.