Prominent Democrat governors and President Donald Trump face the challenge of fighting the coronavirus together despite their political differences.
Some Democrat governors have voiced some modest appreciation for the administration’s efforts, especially with Vice President Mike Pence, but others have aired some criticism of the president’s overall response to the virus.
California Gov. Gavin Newsom voiced praise for Trump’s assistance in handling the cruise ship with coronavirus-infected passengers, noting a long phone call with the president.
“He said everything that I could have hoped for, and we had a very long conversation, and every single thing he said they followed through on,” Newsom said when asked by reporters of how he was working with the president.
The vice president’s office told Breitbart News that Pence has had a successful relationship with Democrat governors, citing Newsom as an example.
“At President Trump’s direction, Vice President Pence has been speaking regularly with Democrat governors, senators, and representatives to update them on the whole-of-America coronavirus efforts,” Pence’s press secretary Katie Miller told Breitbart News. “The president’s coronavirus efforts have garnered support from across the country including California Gov. Newsom.”
On the liberal Pod Save America podcast, Newsom said that Democrats governors viewed the testing shortage as a common point of frustration, but also praised the federal government for providing effective online resources to the public.
“We’ve all been frustrated by the testing protocols,” he said, adding, “This remains an impediment to fully testing what we want in terms of the total numbers.”
But the president’s relationship with other governors remains mixed.
New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo has appeared with his brother, Chris, on CNN to talk about the virus, at times appearing to allude to the president’s handling of the crisis.
“This is not political. You’re not gonna do this on Twitter. This is government, baby. This is what it’s about,” Cuomo said during an interview with his brother, without specifically calling out Trump. “This is the mobilization, the skill, the expertise, to manage a government.”
Last week, Trump berated Andrew Cuomo and his brother for trying to weaponize the virus to attack him politically.
“There are no mixed messages, only political weaponization by people like you and your brother, Fredo!” Trump wrote, after Andrew Cuomo last Sunday criticized the “mixed messages” from the administration.
There are no mixed messages, only political weaponization by people like you and your brother, Fredo! https://t.co/NqH4pHfuwt
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) March 9, 2020
The president recently shared some mixed praise for Andrew Cuomo’s decision to quarantine an area of a New York suburb in response to the virus outbreak.
“You see what they’re doing in New Rochelle, which is good, frankly. It’s the right thing,” he said to reporters at the White House on Thursday. “But it’s not enforced. It’s not very strong.”
Despite Trump describing Washington Gov. Jay Inslee as “a snake” last week, the governor brushed off the personal criticism.
“We are very pleased with the federal government helping us right now,” Inslee said during an interview on CBS News’s Face The Nation on Sunday. “I don’t care what Donald Trump thinks of me and I just kind of ignore it.”
Inslee’s office expressed praised for Pence’s level of communication during the crisis.
“The vice president has made himself available to governors on a regular basis, has done regular check-ins and has moved the ball forward on some key asks that we’ve made of the federal government, including expanding who can be tested,” Inslee adviser Casey Katims said to the New York Times.