President Trump has released his plans for the next chapter of the COVID-19


During a press conference on April 16, President Donald Trump unveiled a three-phase plan called Opening Up America Again. The plan allows non-essential businesses to reopen during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. However, the decision to lift restrictions was left to state governors. 

There are two opposing sides on this issue. One fears heavy restrictions will lead to a recession, while the other fears that removing restrictions will spread COVID-19 more. 

Republican governors largely side with Trump in their belief that reopening nonessential businesses will boost the economy. Democratic governors, on the other hand, prefer to remain in quarantine and continue social distancing measures to keep their citizens safe from the coronavirus. 

“We have a lot of states that, through location, through luck and also through a lot of talent … are in a very good position,” Trump said at a White House press briefing.

States are not legally required to follow the White House’s instructions. Because of this, state governors are pressured for their decision whether to lift restrictions.

Trump said 29 states are in “extremely good shape” and could lift their restrictions by May 1 since they have met all of the guidelines. However, health experts are advocating for widespread COVID-19 testing prior to reopening nonessential businesses.

California and New York are two of the biggest Democratic states to remain in quarantine. Their continued shut down could affect the Republicans’ plans to boost the economy. 

Calif. Gov. Gavin Newsom has no set date for when California will end the stay-at-home order, but he said he will base the decision on health outcomes and science rather than politics. 

On April 13, Newsom was joined by Ore. Gov. Kate Brown and Wash. Gov. Jay Inslee in announcing a Western States Pact, which lays out their plan for reopening their states following the coronavirus pandemic. The pact encompasses a six-point plan which promotes the welfare of their citizens, working with other states and mitigating the virus as much as possible.

N.Y. Gov. Andrew Cuomo has continued “New York on PAUSE,” which began on March 22 with nonessential businesses to remain closed until May 15. 

Cuomo also announced New York will join New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Delaware, Rhode Island and Massachusetts in a plan to gradually reopen the economy in a way that protects the safety of their citizens.

“We have been collaborating closely with our neighboring states to combat this pandemic through a uniform approach to social distancing and density reduction and it has been working well,” Cuomo said. “Now it is time to start opening the valve slowly and carefully while watching the infection rate meter so we don’t trigger a second wave of new infections.”

Although some states are attempting to reopen, their hesitancy towards immediate removal of COVID-19 restrictions is expected to affect Trump’s fast plan to boost the economy. 

Rushing back into normal life too quickly could worsen the economic damage. Without the proper safeguard, there could be a second wave of the outbreak. 

“We’re opening our country and we have to do that,” Trump said. “America wants to be open, and Americans want to be open.”