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Trump Can’t Turn the Economy Back on Without Overriding Executive Orders of 28 Governors

Update: I’ve updated this and reposted. At least six states have added stay at home orders since Trump said he wanted to reopen the economy by Easter. This post was originally published on March 24, just before mid-day.

As noted, yesterday Trump signaled that he wants to turn the economy back on, perhaps 15 days after his original Emergency declaration on March 13 (which would mean the emergency would end on Saturday, March 28). As Ron Klain just noted, though, Trump doesn’t have that ability: Governors, not the President, have been the ones to shut things down (along with a number of mayors and corporate executives).

It will be governors, not Trump, who decide when to reopen the economy.

Over the last week, a set of governors (currently 28) have issued stay-at-home orders; another (MA) imposed a suggested stay at home declaration, and a number of cities and counties have similarly shut down. This NYT story has a great map and numbers showing how many people are affected (though without durations or governor party affiliation).

As the list below makes clear, Trump can’t turn the economy back on without finding a way to rescind the executive orders of a bunch of governors, including those of Republicans Eric Holcomb (whose order goes until April 6), Mike DeWine (whose order goes until April 6), and Jim Justice (whose order doesn’t have a termination date).

Update: Trump just said, “I would love to have the country opened up and raring to go by Easter.”

Update: This has been updated through March 27. This is the most comprehensive list of orders I’ve seen, including those closing businesses as opposed to ordering people to stay at home (though as of today it is missing a business closure from AL’s Kay Ivey).

Update, March 30: Maryland’s Larry Hogan and Virginia’s Ralph Northam, whose initial non-essential business shutdowns had stopped short of a stay-at-home order, have both now issued the latter.


Full stay-at-home orders

  1. Alaska (Republican Governor Mike Dunleavy): Imposed March 27, effective March 28, in effect until April 11.
  2. California (Democratic Governor Gavin Newsom): Imposed and effective March 19, in effect “until further notice.”
  3. Colorado (Democratic Governor Jared Polis): Imposed March 25, effective March 26, in effect until April 11.
  4. Connecticut (Democratic Governor Ned Lamont): Imposed March 20, effective March 23, effective through April 22. (Order)
  5. Delaware (Democratic Governor John Carney): Imposed March 22, effective March 24, in place until May 15 or public health threat eliminated. (Most recent order)
  6. Hawaii (Democratic Governor David Ige): Imposed March 23, effective March 25, effective through April 30.
  7. Idaho (Republican Governor Brad Little): Imposed and effective March 25, effective 21 days (though April 15).
  8. Illinois (Democratic Governor JB Pritzker): Imposed March 20, effective March 21, effective until April 7. (Order)
  9. Indiana (Republican Governor Eric Holcomb): Imposed March 23, effective March 24, effective until April 6. (Most recent orders)
  10. Kansas (Democratic Governor Laura Kelly): Imposed March 28, effective March 30, effective until April 19.
  11. Louisiana (Democratic Governor John Bel Edwards): Imposed March 22, effective March 23, in place until April 13.
  12. Maryland (Republican Governor Larry Hogan): Imposed and effective March 30.
  13. Michigan (Democratic Governor Gretchen Whitmer): Imposed March 23, effective March 24, in place until April 13. (The state announcement, but not the order itself, states the order will be in place “at least” three weeks.)
  14. Minnesota (Democratic Governor Tim Walz): Imposed March 25, effective March 27, effective until April 10.
  15. Montana (Democratic Governor Steve Bullock): Imposed March 27, effective March 28, effective until April 10.
  16. New Hampshire (Republican Governor Chris Sununu): Imposed March 26, effective March 27, effective until May 4.
  17. New Jersey (Democratic Governor Phil Murphy): Imposed and effective March 21, effective until further notice.
  18. New Mexico (Democratic Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham): Imposed March 23, effective March 24, in place until April 10.
  19. New York (Democratic Governor Andrew Cuomo): Imposed March 20, effective March 22, in place until April 19. (Most recent orders available here.)
  20. North Carolina (Democratic Governor Roy Cooper): Imposed March 27, effective March 30, effective for 30 days (until April 29).
  21. Ohio (Republican Governor Mike DeWine): Imposed March 22, effective March 23 in place until April 6.
  22. Oregon (Democratic Governor Kate Brown): Imposed and effective March 23, effective until terminated. (Order)
  23. Rhode Island (Democratic Governor Gina Raimondo): Imposed and effective March 28, effective until April 13.
  24. Vermont (Republican Governor Phil Scott): Imposed March 24, effective March 25, effective until April 15.
  25. Virginia (Democratic Governor Northam): Imposed and effective March 30, effective until June 10.
  26. Washington (Democratic Governor Jay Inslee): Imposed March 23, effective March 26, effective until April 8.
  27. West Virginia (Republican Governor Jim Justice): Imposed March 23, effective March 24, effective until terminated. (Order)
  28. Wisconsin (Democratic Governor Tony Evers): Imposed March 23, effective March 25, effective until April 24.

Non-essential business closures

  1. Kentucky (Democratic Governor Steve Beshear)
  2. Maine (Democratic Governor Janet Mills)
  3. Nevada (Democratic Governor Steve Sisolak)

Senator Bob Graham: Majority on Senate Intelligence Committee Supported Interrogation Oversight in 2002

A couple of weeks ago, I noted that the CIA Memorandum for the Record from their February 4, 2003 briefing of Pat Roberts revealed that Bob Graham, Roberts’ predecessor as Chair of the Senate Intelligence Committee, had attempted to institute some oversight over the CIA’s interrogation program in November 2002. After CIA discouraged the idea in the briefing, Roberts immediately backed off the idea of doing any oversight.

Roberts’ [redacted; staffer?] asked me whether I had “taken up the line” the Committee’s, actually Senator Graham’s, late November request to undertake its own “assessment” of the enhanced interrogation. I [Stan Moskowitz, head of Congressional Affairs] explained to Senator Roberts the dialogue I had had with [redacted], and our responce [sic] that we would not support reading another staffer into the program nor allow any staffer to review the interrogations in real time or visit the clandestine site where the interrogations were taking place. Quickly, the Senator interjected that he saw no reason for the Committee to pursue such a request and could think of “ten reasons right off why it is a terrible idea” for the Committee to do any such thing as had been proposed. Turning to [redacted], he asked whether they thought otherwise and they indicated that they agreed with the Senator.

I wanted to know what kind of oversight Graham had had in mind, so I asked Senator Graham for an explanation of the reference. According to Graham, a majority of Committee members in November 2002–including a few Republicans–supported conducting oversight of the program. And it seems that CIA mischaracterized to Roberts what Graham had planned, perhaps in an effort to dissuade Roberts from conducting that oversight.

Graham reminded me (as I reported last May) that he was never briefed on the abusive techniques the CIA was using. So he didn’t decide to do more oversight of the program because of concerns about the techniques.

Rather, there was “a lot of smoke” that made it clear “something out of the norm was occurring.” There were “rumors that something was occurring out of the ordinary.” (I asked specifically whether he had heard any rumors about the November 2002 Salt Pit death, but he said he had not.)

But contrary to what the CIA represented to Roberts, Graham wasn’t asking to “review the interrogations in real time.” He was planning initial oversight of the interrogation program. He wanted to ask basic questions about what was going on:

  • What’s going on?
  • Who authorized the program?
  • What [intelligence] are we getting out of it?

Graham told me that “well over a majority” of the committee supported doing such oversight. When I asked, he said Jay Rockefeller, who replaced him as the Ranking Democrat on the Committee, supported the effort. Though Graham didn’t remember precisely who was on the Committee at the time (here’s the list), he named Richard Lugar and Mike DeWine as two of the Republicans who were probably in the majority supporting this kind of oversight over the program.

But between CIA’s apparent misrepresentations to Roberts and Roberts’ own disinterest in asking even the most basic questions about the CIA’s interrogation programs, those efforts ended when Graham left the committee and Roberts took over as Chair.

And that’s how Pat Roberts and CIA agreed to avoid asking or answering even the most basic questions about the Bush Administration’s torture program.