Trump: Encouraged Protesters Because Stay-Home Orders Too Tough

Home / Trump: Encouraged Protesters Because Stay-Home Orders Too Tough

After a day of heavy tweeting, President Donald Trump appeared at a White House briefing of on the new coronavirus pandemic and doubled down on his encouragement of protests against social distancing in three states.

On testing, Trump again told governors to do it themselves.

“The States have to step up their TESTING!” Trump tweeted Friday, while also attacking New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo over Twitter for needing help with “testing that you should be doing.”

In one of his more active tweet storms, the president also signaled his support for protests, at least in states with Democratic governors.

Trump told governors Thursday that they would “call the shots” in determining when to reopen their states, but on Friday he seemed to back the people protesting closures in Minnesota, Michigan and Virginia.

“LIBERATE MINNESOTA!” Trump tweeted Friday, followed quickly by a call to “LIBERATE MICHIGAN!”

“LIBERATE VIRGINIA, and save your great 2nd Amendment. It is under siege!” Trump also tweeted, a reference to the state’s expanded background checks and limits on gun purchases signed into law last week.

He said at the news conference Friday that protesters were being “responsible,” though photos and videos show many gathered in large groups standing shoulder to shoulder. Without citing examples, he said some restrictions were too strict.

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People in all three states have staged protests against social distancing measures.

After a relatively subdued performance at Thursday’s news conference, Trump’s Friday battles didn’t stop there.

He rekindled his socially distant spat Cuomo, live-tweeting insults during the governor’s briefing and Cuomo providing on-air retorts.

“Governor Cuomo should spend more time ‘doing’ and less time ‘complaining,'” the president of the United States tweeted.

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