President Trump on Wednesday said he disagrees “strongly” with the decision of Georgia’s governor to allow gyms, tattoo parlors, barbers and other businesses reopen on Friday amid the coronavirus pandemic.
Trump said he spoke to Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp on Wednesday, and did not hold back on his fellow Republican in their conversation.
“I told the governor of Georgia, Brian Kemp, that I disagree strongly with his decision to open certain facilities, which are in violation of the Phase 1 guidelines,” Trump said at a White House press briefing.
“It’s just too soon,” the president said, adding, “They can wait a little bit longer, just a little bit, not much, because safety has to predominate. We have to have that.”
Kemp on Monday said gyms, fitness centers, bowling alleys, tattoo parlors, barbers, cosmetologists, hair designers, nail care artists, estheticians, their respective schools and massage therapists can reopen on Friday with minimum basic operations.
The governor said in a tweet these businesses could already reopen because of “favorable data & more testing.”
“Minimum Basic Operations includes, but is not limited to, screening workers for fever and respiratory illness, enhancing workplace sanitation, wearing masks & gloves if appropriate, separating workspaces by six feet, teleworking if possible & implementing staggered shifts,” Kemp wrote.
But Trump on Wednesday pushed back at the GOP governor, who Trump said he helped elect against Democrat Stacey Abrams.
“I told the governor very simply that I disagree with his decision, but he has to do what he thinks is right,” Trump said.
The Georgia governor needs to “be careful,” said Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases.
Governors should not “leap frog” mitigation steps, he said.
“I would advise him (Kemp) not to just turn the switch on and go,” Fauci said. “Because there is a danger of a rebound.”
Also on Wednesday, Trump signed the executive order that will suspend immigration to the U.S. for the next 60 days.
“In order to protect our great American workers, I’ve just signed an executive order temporarily suspending immigration into the United States,” Trump said. “This will ensure that unemployed Americans of all backgrounds will be first in line for jobs as our economy reopens.”
The order suspends new immigrant visas. There will be exemptions for medical and other essential workers to combat the coronavirus outbreak, along with exemptions for spouses and minor children of American citizens.
Trump said, “We want Americans to have the jobs. We want Americans to have the health care. We want to take care of our citizens first. We have to.”
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