Image of Inslee via Gage Skidmore; image of Whitmer courtesy of governor's office; image of Evers via screengrab Americans trust governors more than President Trump
Image of Inslee via Gage Skidmore; image of Whitmer courtesy of governor's office; image of Evers via screengrab

In a Gallup poll released on Thursday, 68% of Americans had “a great deal” or a “fair amount” of confidence in their governor to make the right economic recommendations in the current pandemic, compared to 47% who said they had a similar amount of trust in President Trump.

A new Gallup poll released on Thursday found that a majority of Americans say they have more confidence in their state’s governor to make the right economic recommendations regarding the novel coronavirus crisis than they do leaders in the federal government. 

In a random sample of more than 1,000 people living in all 50 states, 68% said they have “a great deal” or a “fair amount” of confidence in their governor; 47% said they trusted President Trump’s ability to lead on economic decisions, and 47% and 46% had a great or fair amount of confidence in Republican and Democratic leaders in Congress, respectively.  

The poll’s results come one day after the National Governors Association released a new plan with recommendations for leaders on how best to reopen their states safely. Urging a cautious approach, the “Roadmap to Recovery” proposal also indicated that most states just aren’t there yet.

The 10-point program includes massively expanding testing and surveillance, extending the time for social distancing, assessing statewide healthcare systems, protecting those most at risk by providing proper protective equipment and infrastructure, and developing a cohesive plan to reopen the state. 

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“Opening prematurely — or opening without the tools in place to rapidly identify and stop the spread of the virus — could send states back into crisis mode, push health systems past capacity and force states back into strict social distancing measures,” the report reads. 

Although, largely following the White House Coronavirus Task Force ‘s Guidelines for Opening Up America Again when it comes to testing, the NGA report excoriates the Trump administration for not providing adequate supplies, personal protective equipment (PPE) for those handling tests, or having the actual tests available—adding that estimates of the number of tests needed nationally range from 750,000 to tens of millions per week.

“Widespread testing is necessary to both treat and control infection,” the report states. “It is also essential for early detection of any increases in COVID-19 cases. However, testing capacity remains inadequate.”

A recent report released by Harvard researchers warns that the U.S. will need at least 20 million tests per day to relaunch the economy safely. The Trump administration, however, has maintained that it’s up to the states to get their own medical supplies. 

Despite the NGA’s recommendations, some states are forging ahead and relaxing their stay-at-home restrictions. In an interview with “Fox and Friends,” Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis said that he and the Republican governors of five other Southern states (Georgia, South Carolina, Tennessee, Alabama and Mississippi) have formed a coalition in order to work together to reopen their states. According to the Covid Tracking Project, as of Tuesday, those six states have tested about one-tenth of 1 percent of their total populations. 

“If you put these states together, there is a perfect storm for a massive epidemic peak later on,” Jill Roberts of the University of South Florida’s College of Public Health told Politico. “The Southeast region is not known for having the best health record. Diabetes and heart disease come to mind. I am very concerned about how our states will do it.”

Georgia, for example, plans to allow for the reopening of several types of businesses on Friday—including gyms, nail salons, bowling alleys, and barbershops. When Kemp announced the state’s plans to reopen, he admitted to reporters that the state would likely see a rise in cases.