President Trump is officially in Arizona on May 5 to visit Honeywell, a multi-industry conglomerate now making N95 masks, and to hold a roundtable on Native American issues. Some Arizonans believe that the president is there for a “come to Jesus” meeting with Republican Gov. Doug Ducey for his lack of progress in reopening the state commerce.
As Trump said before boarding Air Force One with several of the Arizona congressional delegation: “The people of our country should think of themselves as warriors. We have to open.”
Honeywell Steps Up as Trump Powwows With Tribal Leaders
The Honeywell production factory has been retooled and shifted to combat the Coronavirus — adding 500 jobs in the manufacturing of medical equipment and masks. The company promises to produce at least 20 million disposable respirators every month for the state and federal government. According to the FDA, N95 respirators are the most effective at preventing airborne particles and fluids from accessing the user. Sen. Martha McSally (R-AZ) and Reps. Paul Gosar (R-AZ) and Debbie Lesko (R-AZ) came along for the meetings and tours. In a show of unity, Arizona’s two other House Republicans, Andy Biggs and David Schweikert, met the delegation at the factory.
But some of Arizona’s Democratic members of Congress believe Trump is looking for a photo op. The Navajo Nation has been the hardest hit demographic of COVID-19, and after the administration held up relief to tribal leaders, the response by Trump has been a major sticking point for Arizona’s House delegates.
“The president held this up, probably so he could have this photo op,” declared Rep. Ruben Gallego (D-AZ), the man who chairs the House subcommittee on indigenous peoples. Rep. Greg Stanton (D-AZ) called the president’s visit a “moral failing” and claimed the White House ignored urgent “pleas” for help from Navajo elders: “This Administration’s slow and inadequate response has dire consequences for tribal members—it is quite literally a matter of life and death.”
And Then There’s Doug Ducey
Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey — a vocal supporter of the president — dragged his feet on reopening his state. Just last week, he extended Arizona’s stay-at-home order through May 15. That is, until Trump announced a personal visit. Within hours, Ducey announced reopening plans, giving a sequestered electorate a ray of hope. At the time of this writing, Arizona has 9,305 confirmed cases of the nasty bug, resulting in 395 fatalities. Ducey is feeling the pressure of collapsing his state’s economy or risking the health of his citizens. It’s a reality that all state governors face. But that hasn’t stopped the president from encouraging a cautious — “The governors, it’s in their hands, but our country wants to open” — yet urgent reopening.
“We did everything right. Now it’s time to get back to work,” Trump opined before leaving the Swamp. And for Arizonans get a hair cut and perhaps, per the governor, a mani-pedi.
Read more from Sarah Cowgill.
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