President Trump said Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer ‘doesn’t have a clue’ when it comes to the coronavirus and the economy.
The claims were made by Trump during a rally on Thursday night, hours after the Democratic governor had criticized the president’s handling of the crisis during a news conference.
‘Michigan has already gained and regained more than half of the jobs that it lost – and if your state was ever allowed to safely reopen by your governor, who doesn’t have a clue, just like Joe Biden, you would have gained far more than that,’ Trump said at his rally in Freeland, Saginaw County.
‘Open up your state, Madam Governor, open up your state!’
Trump arrived in Michigan for the rally despite pushback from officials worried that his rallies are growing in size and flouting public health guidelines intended to halt the COVID-19 spread
Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer sharply criticized President Donald Trump following revelations that he had purposely downpla yed the deadly coronavirus, calling it ‘devastating’ news and Trump the ‘biggest threat’ to Americans
Michigan would be better off if it ‘had a governor who knew what the hell she was doing,’ Trump continued before describing her as a ‘liberal hypocrite who lives by a different set of rules.’
The president’s comments came after Gov. Whitmer on Thursday sharply criticized President Donald Trump following revelations that he had purposely downplayed the deadly coronavirus, calling it ‘devastating’ news and Trump the ‘biggest threat’ to Americans.
Whitmer, whose state was hit hard by COVID-19 in the spring, reacted a day after the release of excerpts from journalist Bob Woodward’s book.
Woodward, who interviewed Trump 18 times and recorded the conversations, said the president acknowledged being alarmed by the virus in February, even as he was telling the nation it was no worse than the flu and that it would swiftly disappear.
The president arrived at the MBS International Airport in Freeland, Michigan, where he was met by a cheering crowd of supporters
‘It’s just devastating to hear that,’ the governor said at a news conference. ‘We’ve been working so hard to save lives.’
She said it would be one thing for Trump to have not been well informed about the new virus, ‘but it’s a whole other thing to be reckless or ignorant and to be deceptive and to have American lives lost because of it. They knew. They didn’t tell us.
‘I think the biggest enemy of the state right now is the misinformation that’s coming out of the Head of the State. The biggest threat to the American people is the American president now. It’s devastating. I do not relish saying that.
‘My personal opinion was this administration has been reckless and not particularly well-informed,’ Whitmer stated. ‘I’ve never believed they read all the briefings they’re supposed to read.’
Trump, who campaigned outside Saginaw on Thursday night, has explained that he was just being a ‘cheerleader’ for the country and trying to keep everyone calm.
Michigan Republican Party Chairwoman Laura Cox said Whitmer should ‘look in the mirror,’ criticizing her handling of the coronavirus inside nursing homes.
Trump is seen speaking to a crowd of several thousand supporters on Thursday night before heading back to DC
Whitmer raised alarms earlier on Thursday about the rally and although she did not try to scuttle the event, she warned that such gatherings ‘threaten all that sacrifice that we’ve made’.
‘If the rallies are like those he’s held in recent days in other states, with lots of people close together without masks on projecting their voices, I’m concerned about it,’ she said at a news conference Thursday morning.
‘This is not a partisan observation. We are in a public health crisis. We all want to get out of this public health crisis. It’s going to take every one of us doing the right things to get out of it together, to make this as short as possible.’
Michigan currently caps outdoor events at 100 people and mandates that attendees wear masks if they cannot consistently stay 6 feet away from people who are not part of their households.