Trump says Jared and Ivanka won’t be part of new economic coronavirus council
President Trump told reporters Monday that senior advisers Jared Kushner and Ivanka Trump would not be part of the White House council he is convening to guide the reopening of the U.S. economy.
Fox News had reported earlier Monday that the council was expected to include the president’s daughter and son-in-law.
President Trump said last week that he would likely announce the members of the new task force, which he said would be called the “Opening Our Country Council,” on Tuesday.
Other names that have been reported as likely members of the council include White House chief of staff Mark Meadows, economic adviser Larry Kudlow and a handful of other Cabinet officials.
Trump and top administration officials are currently weighing whether to relax social distancing guidelines in parts of the country in order to help revive the U.S. economy as the spread of the coronavirus appears to slow.
“We’re going to be putting out guidelines and recommendations fairly quickly, within a few days,” Trump said at Monday’s White House press briefing.
The new council is distinct from the White House coronavirus task force, but the two are expected to work together to chart a path forward.
State and local officials have issued stay-at-home orders and instructed nonessential businesses to close in order to reduce the spread of the virus, causing massive layoffs across the country. Nearly 17 million people have applied for unemployment benefits over the past three weeks.
The guidelines, which call on Americans to avoid public places and nonessential travel and limit in-person gatherings to 10 people or fewer, extend until April 30. Trump on Monday insisted he had the ultimate authority to “open up states,” though legal experts have disputed that assertion, saying the president cannot reverse orders put in place by state and local officials.
Trump insisted Monday evening that he wanted to ensure that the country can reopen safely but made clear he wanted to do it as soon as possible. He wouldn’t say whether he was eyeing May 1 as a date but indicated details about the White House’s plan are forthcoming.