GOP seeking doctors to back reopening strategy: report

GOP seeking doctors to back reopening strategy: report
© Bonnie Cash

The Trump campaign and allies of the president are reportedly looking for doctors to speak in support of the Trump administration's efforts to stop the spread of coronavirus. 

The Associated Press reported Tuesday that GOP operatives discussed recruiting "extremely pro-Trump" doctors to the campaign's cause during a May 11 conference call, audio of which was leaked to the AP by a progressive group.

The doctors sought out by the Trump campaign will endorse a view that state economies should be reopened as quickly as possible, a view often espoused by the president that has clashed with state leaders around the country.

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“There is a coalition of doctors who are extremely pro-Trump that have been preparing and coming together for the war ahead in the campaign on health care,” GOP activist Nancy Schulze reportedly said on the call. “And we have doctors that are … in the trenches, that are saying ‘It’s time to reopen.’”

A Trump campaign spokesperson confirmed to the AP that the campaign was seeking medical professionals who supported the president's efforts to reopen the country. 

“Anybody who joins one of our coalitions is vetted,” Tim Murtaugh said. “And so quite obviously, all of our coalitions espouse policies and say things that are, of course, exactly simpatico with what the president believes. ... The president has been outspoken about the fact that he wants to get the country back open as soon as possible.”

“The purpose of campaign coalitions is to amplify and promote President TrumpDonald John TrumpSessions accepts 'Fox News Sunday' invitation to debate, Tuberville declines Priest among those police cleared from St. John's Church patio for Trump visit Trump criticizes CNN on split-screen audio of Rose Garden address, protesters clashing with police MORE’s accomplishments and point of view," Murtaugh added to The Hill in an email."The president has been outspoken about the fact that he wants to get the country back open as soon and as safely as possible because there are also health risks associated with a prolonged lockdown."

"There are a lot of doctors who agree with that and support what the President has done to combat the coronavirus," he continued.

Numerous states have announced plans to reopen some nonessential businesses and public spaces in the coming weeks, though hard-hit states such as New Jersey have offered no exact timelines for some businesses to reopen.

Protests in several states have emerged urging leaders to end lockdown orders, though some have been met with counterprotests.

Updated at 11:50 a.m.