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Tipsheet

Here's Why President Trump Refuses to Issue a National Stay-at-Home Order

AP Photo/Alex Brandon

Every day, the White House Coronavirus Task Force briefs the nation on the Wuhan coronavirus, the federal government's response to the virus and the next steps that we, as a nation, must take. It seems like one continual question comes up: why doesn't President Donald Trump issue a national stay-at-home order, otherwise referred to as a national lockdown?

The president addressed that very issue during Saturday's briefing.

"Mr. President, you said you want to see as few lives lost as possible in the pandemic, but there are still eight governors, all Republicans, who have refused to issue these statewide stay-at-home orders," CNN's Jeremy Diamond asked. "Your own experts, including Dr. Fauci, have said stay-at-home orders are the most effective way to stop the spread of this virus, so why not do everything possible right now to do that?"

"We have a thing called the Constitution, which I cherish, number one. Number two, those governors, I know every one of them, they're doing a great job. They're being very, very successful with what they're doing," Trump replied. "And, as you know, I want governors to be running things. In some cases, we'll supersede."

President Trump really finds himself in a catch-22 situation. If he announced a national lockdown, people would freak out, saying he's taking away states' rights and abusing his power. Because he's not implementing this stay-at-home order, he's being accused of "not doing enough." Whatever decision he makes or doesn't make, someone would light him up.

We should be encouraging the federal government to support states to make the best decisions for its residents. It doesn't make sense for places like North Dakota to be on lockdown the same way New York or Washington State is. It's comparing apples to oranges.

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