Center for American Progress Action

These governors followed Trump’s advice. Now, their states are pandemic hot spots.

These governors followed Trump’s advice. Now, their states are pandemic hot spots.

This piece was originally published in the August 5, 2020 edition of CAP Action’s daily newsletter, the Progress Report. Subscribe to the Progress Report here.

FL Gov. Ron DeSantis and Trump at a public event this week.
Source: AP via FlaPol

“We don’t have to listen to any more of your rhetorical speeches.”

— Sen. Mazie Hirono (D-HI) yesterday before she walked out of Ted Cruz’s sham Antifa hearing

The Republican governors of Florida, Arizona, and Georgia chose to listen to Trump instead of public health experts.

Their decisions to reopen their states too soon have had devastating consequences.

Watch and share this video on Facebook and Twitter to get the facts out:


  • Coronavirus cases are still widespread in many states, including Georgia, Florida, and Arizona, where the governors have followed Trump’s model of ignoring data and expert advice while failing to take necessary precautions to mitigate the spread of the virus. Florida’s confirmed case count topped 500,000 today, while Georgia’s total surpassed 200,000 cases. Arizona has more than 182,000 confirmed cases.
  • As cases keep rising in a number of states, Trump is still pushing the misguided notion that schools should reopen for in-person learning across-the-board this fall. “This thing is going away,” he said on Fox and Friends this morning. “[Coronavirus] will go away like things go away and my view is that schools should be open.” As you might have guessed, this contradicts what experts and school officials have said.
  • Trump’s encouraging schools to reopen with no national safety plan is dangerous, and we’re already seeing the impact. In schools which have already reopened, the outcomes haven’t been promising. A second grade student in Georgia — where Trump-aligned Governor Brian Kemp has barred localities from requiring masks — tested positive on the first day of classes, leading the school to send their class home to quarantine. Images show the school’s hallways packed with students, many of them not adhering to mask-wearing or social distancing guidance. A fourth grader in North Carolina also tested positive, and others are likely to follow as schools continue to open without comprehensive safety plans.


  • Missourians voted to expand Medicaid last night, becoming the 39th state to do so since this funding became available and following in Oklahoma’s footsteps in doing so during the pandemic. This is yet another sign that people across party and ideological lines desperately need more than our current health care system offers.
  • Trump has spent at least $2.2 million on Facebook ads that have been deemed false by the platform’s third-party fact checkers. According to a Washington Post report informed by CAP Action research, Trump’s campaign has taken advantage of Facebook’s policy allowing politicians to lie with impunity, a practice that is not permitted from nonpolitical advertisers. Trump’s ads have reportedly made untrue claims about Joe Biden’s positions on school choice and health care for immigrants, as well as on the effectiveness of his own response to the coronavirus crisis.
  • In a piece out today, the Washington Post’s Greg Sargent outlines CAP’s roadmap for the next Administration to hold the Trump Administration accountable for its corruption. “To look the other way with respect to the actions of the Trump administration would mean that the rule of law is not a constant, but rather that it only exists for certain administrations and for certain people,” writes Sargent. “Which is to say that it does not exist at all.”


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