Where Things Stand: ‘Most Of You Are Weak’

This is your TPM early-afternoon briefing.
WASHINGTON, DC - MAY 30: U.S. President Donald Trump waves walking off Marine One on May 30, 2020 in Washington, DC. President Trump returned to Washington after the successful launch of the SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket w... WASHINGTON, DC - MAY 30: U.S. President Donald Trump waves walking off Marine One on May 30, 2020 in Washington, DC. President Trump returned to Washington after the successful launch of the SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket with the manned Crew Dragon spacecraft at the Kennedy Space Center in Florida. (Photo by Tasos Katopodis/Getty Images) MORE LESS

The irony.

Speaking to governors and other state officials from the Oval Office just now, President Trump suggested that most of those governors on the call were “weak” and urged state leaders to crack down on violence as protests erupt across the nation following the death of George Floyd last week.

It’s no surprise this is his approach. The President has been all over Twitter this weekend as protests turned destructive and police clashes with protesters grew increasingly violent — speaking up primarily to escalate his Charlottesville-era attacks on anti-fascists. Aides also reportedly urged Trump to chill on the divisive tweets. But the direct criticism of governors and other law enforcement officials from the Oval Office is dripping in hypocrisy.

As unrest escalated and protests became increasingly violent near the White House over the weekend, Trump reportedly stowed himself away in the White House’s underground bunker — famously, the spot where former Vice President Dick Cheney took shelter during the September 11 attacks.

The decision was, of course, made by Secret Service and Trump only spent about an hour underground. But the weakness accusation is rich coming from the President who would rather tweet “LAW & ORDER!” during a time of justified unrest and defend white supremacists rather than speak plainly about the ongoing threat of police brutality that sparked the uproar.

Here’s more on that and other stories we’re following today:

What The Investigations Team Is Watching

Matt Shuham is digging into reports that the New York City Sergeants’ posted non-public arrest information about Mayor Bill de Blasio’s daughter’s arrest after she was taken into custody at a protest over the weekend.

Josh Kovensky is looking into the spike of pneumonia deaths in reopened states.

What The Breaking News Team Is Watching

The Minneapolis police chief on Sunday said that all four officers — not just Derek Chauvin — were “complicit” in the death of George Floyd and should be held responsible. Police Chief Medaria Arradondo made the remarks during a live television exchange with Floyd’s family, where a CNN reporter passed on questions from the family to the police chief in real time. Chauvin was charged with third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter last week. We’ll continue covering whether additional charges are brought.

The nation’s top infectious disease expert candidly told the media over the weekend that his meetings with President Trump have “dramatically decreased” in recent weeks, despite the ongoing threat of the spread of the coronavirus. During an interview with STAT News on Monday, Dr. Anthony Fauci said daily meetings with the President are no longer taking place.

If You Read Anything On COVID-19 Today, Read This

Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts joined the liberal flank of the court on Friday to reject an appeal from a church in California attempting to challenge state rules about worship gatherings amid COVID-19.

Earlier coverage of COVID-19 reopening challenges:

Coming Up

10:30 a.m. ET: Trump met with the attorney general in the Oval Office.

11:00 a.m. ET: Trump met with governors, law enforcement and national security officials.

12:30 p.m. ET: Trump and the vice president will meet for lunch.

2:00 p.m. ET: The White House press secretary will hold a press briefing.

Yesterday’s Most Read Story

Surveying The Whirlwind — Josh Marshall

What We Are Reading

Minneapolis Police Rendered 44 People Unconscious With Neck Restraints In Five Years — Emily R. Siegel, Andrew W. Lehren and Andrew Blankstein

George Floyd Case Another Teachable Moment On Race, But In Bay Area And Elsewhere, Few Lessons Learned — Otis R. Taylor Jr.

How To Make This Moment The Turning Point For Real Change — Barack Obama

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