Anchor Joy Reid opened the discussion by playing a clip of Trump’s statements, asking Davidson how he feels about Trump’s remarks.
“None of us signed up to be warriors in Donald Trump’s battle between public health and the economy,” the doctor began, arguing that it is unrealistic to expect the economy to recover before the COVID-19 public health crisis is solved.
Davidson explained that states like Michigan, where he lives, need a “consistent message” from the White House, not words of encouragement. According to the doctor, medical professionals need more protective personal equipment and COVID-19 tests, which is why the president should activate the Defense Production Act.
Davidson noted that some states need more help, while praising Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer for the job she has done so far.
“I know here in Michigan we have a governor who has put out a 17-page, six-step plan. We’re in Phase Three right now,” he said.
The doctor then slammed Trump for his “ludicrous” comments about Americans being “warriors” ready to fight the coronavirus pandemic.
“And calling us ‘warriors’ and expecting us to sacrifice ourselves for some economy that he is dreaming that is going to recover without public health, I think is ludicrous.”
As The Washington Post reported, Trump — who has declared himself a “wartime president” — appears to have adopted battlefield rhetoric amid the pandemic. The commander-in-chief has described farmers, Republican lawmakers, and ordinary Americans as “warriors,” seemingly looking to shift the focus toward reopening the economy.
As the publication notes, Trump has also drawn parallels between the coronavirus pandemic and prior national crises, going so far as to compare the fight against COVID-19 to World War II. The president has repeatedly suggested that Americans need to overcome the challenge collectively, like they did in the 1940s.
For weeks, despite warnings from public health experts, Trump has been pushing to reopen the nation. On Friday, during a White House meeting with congressional Republicans, he said that Americans are eager to get back to work.
“The people want to come back. You see what’s going on at statehouses all over the country,” the president stated.
According to Trump, Democratic politicians don’t want the country to reopen because they want their party’s nominee, former Vice President Joe Biden, to win in November, and not because they are concerned about public health and the spread of COVID-19.