WASHINGTON (NEXSTAR) — Kansas Gov. Laura Kelly visited the White House Wednesday to meet with President Donald Trump, saying swift action from the federal government on coronavirus saved lives in her state.
Joined by Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchinson, Kelly and the president discussed the states’ food supply, reopening strategies and more.
“I appreciate what your team has done,” Kelly told the president.
She said the president’s actions allows Kansas meatpacking plants — the site of the state’s largest outbreaks of coronavirus — to stay open.
“When we put out a cry for help with our meatpacking plants, you sent in a (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) SWAT team,” she said.
With the rate of infections and deaths in her state slowing, Kelly said she’s looking forward to beginning phase two of reopening the economy. In that phase, Kansas residents will be able to go to places like arcades, movie theaters and even sports tournaments by Friday. Places like bars and nightclubs will still be off limits.
“The economy is ready to get back on its feet and ready get back moving again,” Rep. Ron Estes, R-Kan., said. “We’ve passed that crisis point.”
If infection rates continue to trend down, Kelly said, the state will begin phase three of reopening June 8.
“Your representatives and my representatives really work well together,” Trump told Kelly.
The Republican president said praise from Kelly, a Democrat, proves his administration stepped up in the middle of the crisis.