Amash knocks Trump tweet about power to ‘open up’ states: ‘Read the Constitution’

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Rep. Justin Amash (I-Mich.) called out President Trump for his “flat-out wrong” tweet claiming the president has the power to reopen states where businesses have ground to a halt in response to the coronavirus pandemic instead of governors. 

“President Trump is flat-out wrong,” Amash tweeted Monday, in response to Trump’s earlier tweet.

“The president has no authority to ‘close down’ or ‘open up’ the states. He’s the one creating conflict and confusion,” Amash, a former Republican who announced last summer that he would be leaving his party after coming out in support of an impeachment inquiry against Trump, said.

“Put down the authoritarianism and read the Constitution,” he added.

Trump tweeted Monday morning that it is within his authority to decide when to “open up the states.” He said the “Fake News Media” is reporting that it’s up to the governors “for the purpose of creating conflict and confusion.” 

“It is the decision of the President, and for many good reasons. With that being said, the Administration and I are working closely with the Governors, and this will continue. A decision by me, in conjunction with the Governors and input from others, will be made shortly!” Trump tweeted. 

Legal experts who spoke to The Hill said that Trump can issue federal regulations to prevent the spread of diseases, but said the president doesn’t have the authority to reverse public health restrictions put in place at state or local levels. 

Nearly every state has issued a stay-at-home order in response to the coronavirus pandemic. 

The White House has recommended Americans avoid restaurants and nonessential travel as well as keep in-person gatherings to 10 people until April 30, but Trump has largely avoided telling states what measures to put in place. 

Some states could possibly begin rolling back restrictions beginning next month, Anthony Fauci said Sunday. Fauci, a member of the White House coronavirus task force, warned that the measures need to be gradual and will differ by region.

Tags Anthony Fauci Coronavirus Donald Trump Justin Amash

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