These Republicans Think Trump's Easter Coronavirus Deadline Doesn't 'Make Sense'

www.thedailybeast.com
6 min read
fairly difficult
These Republicans lead or want to lead their states and they need Trump to make it happen, but aren't sure his Easter deadline for an end to social distancing is the right call.
Republicans are often keen to follow Donald Trump's lead.

But faced with whether or not to go along with the president's Easter deadline to begin reopening the country from the coronavirus pandemic, 2020 GOP candidates are all over the map.

Tension over public health measures have begun to play out nationwide as long grocery store lines, closed schools and major canceled events serve as the backdrop for a nation sent reeling by the pandemic on Trump's watch.

In the crowded GOP race to replace Democratic Gov. Steve Bullock in Montana, Al Olszewski, a Republican state senator and orthopedic surgeon, emphasized there is no one size fits all approach that works nationwide and isn't predicting "business as usual come Easter."

"I am hopeful that we can open up and start opening up our economy come Easter time, but I don't think that it's going to be opened up 100 percent," he said. "I think it should be phased in to try to get us back up to full speed. It'll probably take us two to three months to do so, and it's dependent on successful treatments. It's dependent on the availability of testing."

Olszewski said he understands that Trump "is trying to be our cheerleader" and "provide optimism." There's plenty of fear and anxiety in Montana, he said, where people are more worried about their business and taking care of their family than they are of getting sick.

"With the president as the cheerleader, I know that he's got people behind him that I'm sure are going to be more measured and will create phases," Olszewski said. "That's just the public health way."

There are 11 races for governor on the ballot nationwide in 2020, according to The Cook Political Report, with seven currently controlled by Republicans. But in the four states held at the moment by Democratic governors, some GOP challengers were quick to wrap their arms around Trump's approach as they look ahead to either longshot election chances or contests where they come in already at a…
Hunter Woodall
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