State Watch

GOP governor praises federal pandemic response, but says its ‘a little bit inconsistent’

Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchinson (R) on Sunday praised the federal government’s recent handling the COVID-19 pandemic, but said its messaging has been “a little bit inconsistent.”

Appearing on “Fox News Sunday,” Hutchinson called the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) decision to shorten its recommended period of quarantine following infection from 10 days to five days for asymptomatic cases an “important step.”

“It’s a recognition that we have to be able to manage our way through this virus. We have to get people to work the supply shortages, the staff shortages — [those] really do a great deal of harm as well,” said Hutchinson. “I think they used science, they overlaid it with practicality. So I applaud them for that change.

The CDC’s decision sparked a polarizing response from lawmakers and health experts.

FOX News Channel’s chief breaking news correspondent, Trace Gallagher, also noted on Sunday that Hutchinson caused a bit of stir last week when he publicly advised President Biden to “not let federal solution stand in the way of state solutions.”

Biden responded by saying “there is no federal solution. This gets solved on a state level.”

Gallagher asked the Arkansas governor what he took Biden’s response to mean.

“I think it, well, it’s a little bit ironic. I mean, whenever you see the federal mandates on vaccinations, they have in this administration utilize federal power rather extensively and that’s one of the things we’re in litigation about. So it’s a little bit inconsistent,” Hutchinson said. “But I also take it as a good faith statement to say we’ve got to get through this together in partnership. We can’t do it by the federal government alone.”

Tags Arkansas Asa Hutchinson Asa Hutchinson Fox News Joe Biden Joe Biden

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