The United States' optimistic reopening plans "are close to being finalized," which includes some of 20 less-infected states potentially getting back to work even before May 1, President Donald Trump said Tuesday.
"We will soon be sharing details and new guidelines with everybody," Trump told reporters during Tuesday's coronavirus task force briefing in the White House Rose Garden. "I will be speaking to all 50 governors very shortly, and I will then be authorizing each individual governor of each individual state to implement a reopening, very powerful reopening plan of their state in a time in a manner which is most appropriate.
"The day must be close, because certain states as you know are in much different condition. It's going to be very, very close. Maybe even before the date of May 1. That will be for some states."
Trump teased 20 states might be closer to opening than others of the more infected areas amid the global coronavirus pandemic, because "actually, there are over 20 that are in extremely good shape."
"The federal government will be watching them very closely and will be there to help," he added. "We will be there to help in many different ways as we have been."
One day after declaring "total authority" of the U.S. president, amid a potential standoff with state governors on local authority, including New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo, Trump said he will issue guideless for the states on COVID-19 testing and business protocols.
"When somebody's the president of the United States, the authority is total, and that's how it's got to be," Trump said Monday.
Gov. Cuomo offered a blunt rejoinder that echoed the country's colonial-turned-separatist past.
"We don't have a king in this country," Cuomo said in his daily news briefing Tuesday. "We didn't want a king. So we have a Constitution and we elect a president.
"The president is clearly spoiling for a fight on this issue," Cuomo said. "The worst thing we can do . . . is start with political division."
Former Vice President Joe Biden, the presumed Democratic challenger to Trump, echoed that theme, tweeting:
"I am not running for office to be King of America. I respect the Constitution. I've read the Constitution. I've sworn an oath to it many times. I respect the great job so many of this country's governors — Democratic and Republican — are doing under these horrific circumstances."
The federal government does have broad constitutional authority over states on things that cross state lines and involve the entire nation, like regulating interstate commerce and immigration, levying taxes or declaring war. Its powers are drawn from the Supremacy Clause of the Constitution, which establishes that federal laws in most cases supersede state laws. Congress can also pass laws giving the president additional authority.
Trump stressed Tuesday, the governors will lead their respective states with guidance from the federal government.
"We will hold the governors accountable, but, again, we will be working with them to make sure that it works really well," Trump said.
States with fewer people and less-concentrated populations will be the first to reopen, Trump said, alluding to 29 states that have far lower infection rates.
The hardest-hit states of New York, New Jersey, Michigan, Louisiana, Illinois, and Massachusetts will require more time for social distancing and COVID-19 mitigation protocals than May 1, which is when the coronavirus task force guideline of 30 to slow the spread will expire.
Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.
© 2021 Newsmax. All rights reserved.