According to the report, six people close to the White House or Trump campaign are "confident" that reopening the economy amid the coronavirus pandemic sooner rather than later will help the president in November. The group believes there are signs that this approach is the path to victory, including the Trump supporter protests of stay-at-home orders that have been surfacing around the country.
Adam Brandon, president of FreedomWorks, a conservative group that recently polled on reopening the economy, suggests that a continued shutdown of the economy will cause Trump's base to "revolt."
"The worst strategy for him is to keep things shut until August. Trump is basically going to win or lose his election right now, in the next month."Per Politico, Republicans are hoping that Trump's handling of the coronavirus, which has received a great deal of criticism, will be less critical in November in the face of a rejuvenated economy.
During a phone interview with Politico, Trump campaign communications director Tim Murtaugh said that, as of now, the president is focused on protecting both the health of Americans and the economy.
"The president knows America is not meant to be shut down for months at a time and go dormant for three, four, six, nine months. That's why he wants to get this country moving again and moving quickly as possible but only when and where it is safe."According to Jonathan Chait in New York Magazine, Trump's itch to reopen the economy is driven by his fear of losing in November. Chait points to the president's internal campaign polls, which suggest he has lost the initial bump in approval from early in the COVID-19 crisis, and the recent public polls that echo this loss.
"That political desperation is the context to understand Trump's palpable desire to reopen the economy by May 1 or sooner," Chait wrote.
Despite the push to reopen from his Republican allies, many others are criticizing the president's focus on the economy and noting the possible wave of death it could cause. As The Inquisitr previously reported, political commentator Thomas L. Friedman likened a premature reopening of the economy to forcing Americans to play Russian roulette with their lives.
In response to Trump's claim that the U.S. has sufficient testing kits, governors — both Democratic and Republican — have pushed back and said this isn't the case.