During his third national media appearance of the day, Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan on Tuesday continued to dismiss President Trump’s criticism of him, saying on ABC’s “The View” that it is Trump who appears misinformed about the state of testing in Maryland.
“The president seemed to be a little confused yesterday in his press conference,” said Hogan (R). “I have no idea what set him off.”
The governor and the president have tangled in recent days as Hogan, a Republican who once considered a primary challenge to Trump, draws national attention for his response to the coronavirus pandemic.
On Monday night, Trump singled out Hogan during a televised news briefing and said that “he needed to get a little knowledge” about lab testing options within Maryland’s borders. Testing shortages have stymied the country’s ability to contain the virus and could limit how quickly the economy can reopen once a surge in cases abates.
“He said we needed to be leading and we needed to be stepping up,” Hogan said. “That’s exactly what we have done.”
Separately, New York Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo (D) praised Hogan during his daily televised news briefing for getting the tests from another country, saying the federal government should be working with other nations and that “Larry Hogan is a better governor.”
During Hogan’s appearance on “The View,” he renewed another criticism he has leveled at Trump, saying the president is contradicting his own guidance when he encourages people to protest stay-at-home orders meant to hinder the virus’s spread.
“It’s unhelpful. It doesn’t make any sense, the mixed messaging we’re getting out of the president,” Hogan said. “In our state, and in most of the states where he’s encouraging protests, we don’t have 14 days of downward numbers, which is what the president’s plan … called for,” Hogan said, referring to federal guidance that recommends widespread social distancing until states see two weeks of declining coronavirus caseloads.
“He basically was encouraging people to violate his own federal policy,” Hogan said.
Later in the day, Hogan publicly released a letter to Trump thanking the federal government for offering use of federal labs for the state’s testing needs. He noted that he, Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam (D) and D.C. Mayor Muriel E. Bowser (D) had asked for federal help for testing in the capital region more than a month ago. And he asked for guidance on how he can immediately access federal labs.
“As chair of the National Governors Association, I want to thank you for the continued coordination between federal, state and local governments during the COVID-19 pandemic,” Hogan’s letter began.
He continued: “The federal labs can be key to our utilizing the 500,000 test we recently acquired from South Korea and our comprehensive recovery plan to get Marylanders back to work as safely and quickly as possible. I was grateful to hear of your generous offer to allow the State of Maryland to access these federal labs for our testing.”