Vice President Mike Pence repeatedly dodged questions concerning President Trump’s recent tweets calling on governors to “LIBERATE” protesters defying stay-at-home orders, during Sunday morning interviews.
When Chuck Todd of “Meet The Press” asked Pence to explain what Trump is trying to “liberate” states like Minnesota — which has experienced protests against the state’s stay-at-home order — from, Pence pivoted to discussing how Trump would like to reopen the economy as soon as possible and how the administration has advised states to use discretion on when to loosen social distancing measures amid the COVID-19 outbreak.
Todd then circled back to his question by asking Pence why Trump is “trying to undermine the guidance” that he laid out on Thursday, only to undermine it a day later.
“Chuck, I don’t accept your premise, and I don’t think most Americans do either,” Pence said. “The President’s made it clear: he wants to reopen America, and we laid out guidelines for every state in the country to safely and responsibly reopen their economy at the time and manner of their choosing.”
WATCH: Why is President Trump trying to undermine guidance for states on social distancing with tweets about "liberating" Minnesota and Michigan? #MTP #IfItsSunday@VP: "The president has made it clear — he wants to reopen America." pic.twitter.com/s39u5tQPzI
— Meet the Press (@MeetThePress) April 19, 2020
Pence also deflected when asked the same question during his appearance on “Fox News Sunday,” saying that “no one in America wants to reopen this country more than” Trump.
“On Thursday, the President directed us to lay out guidelines for when and how states could responsibly do that and in the President’s tweets and public statements,” Pence said. “I can assure you he’s going to continue to encourage governors to find ways to safely and responsibly let America go back to work. And the guidelines for opening up America again give a road map for doing just that.”
Pence on Trump's "LIBERATE" tweets: "He’s going to continue to encourage governors to find ways to safely and responsibly let America go back to work." pic.twitter.com/u3a4kYEioF
— Talking Points Memo (@TPM) April 19, 2020