Coronavirus crisis: Lawmakers split on when US should reopen

Washington DC Bureau

WASHINGTON (NEXSTAR) – President Donald Trump is weighing when to open the country back up following his administration’s “30 days to slow the spread” initiative.

“We’ve got to turn the page at some point,” Rep. Ross Spano (R-FL-15) said Monday.

The Republican Florida Congressman said he hopes that time is near, as businesses in his Tampa Bay area district struggle to stay afloat.

“I was a small business over for 14 years, so I understand the types of decisions these folks are making,” Spano said.

As business owners make those decisions, President Trump is weighing his own – when to reopen the United States.

“It’s the biggest decision I’ve ever had to make,” President Trump said Friday.

The president is creating a new council of doctors, business leaders and lawmakers to help him with his choice.

Congressman Dr. Neal Dunn (R-FL-2) happens to hold two of those titles.

“I’d be honored to serve,” Dunn said Monday.

Dunn said he understands the impact of the virus. He tested positive for COVID-19 just days ago.

He said Monday that he is doing fine and only has mild symptoms.

Dunn said the country should begin to reopen where and when it can.

“Going back to work where it is safe to go back to work,” Dunn added.

President Trump’s top health advisors have said relaxing social distancing guidelines too soon is risky.

“There’s no doubt you’re going to see cases,” Dr. Anthony Fauci, Director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, said last week.

On Monday, the president said he has the final say.

But Alabama Congresswoman Terri Sewell (D-AL-7) said she wants to see the timeline driven by data and experts.

“I think it’s important the governor solicit information not only from our medium, small and large businesses, our minority businesses, our women-owned businesses but she also takes the very best advice we can get from our health care professionals,” Sewell said Monday.

Sewell said the governor should have the final say in her state.

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