Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer reiterated her appeal for more help fighting the coronavirus pandemic in her state and dismissed the political games she’s had to play with the Trump administration on The Daily Social Distancing Show Wednesday.
Whitmer notably called into the show wearing a shirt that read “That Woman From Michigan,” a pointed nod to the dismissive remarks President Donald Trump made about her during an interview with Fox News’ Sean Hannity. Whitmer had been urging the federal government to provide more medical equipment, and in turn, Trump said: “We’ve had a big problem with the young, a woman governor, you know who I’m talking about, from Michigan.”
During her interview with Noah, Whitmer said: “I don’t think any of us has the energy to deal with politics right now. All of our energy, all of our focus has to be on meeting the needs of our people. People are dying. Every day, we are announcing additional people that have tested positive for COVID-19 and the number of lives that are lost — those are stories, those are people who leave loved ones and family, those are people who relied on the healthcare system to meet their needs… I don’t have time to think about anything other than fighting COVID-19.”
Michigan now has the fourth-highest number of documented COVID-19 cases in the United States with 9,293 as of publication (per the New York Times), with Whitmer acknowledging exacerbating factors in her state like Detroit being a travel hub and much of the state living below the poverty line. Elsewhere in the interview, she spoke about the difficulties governors across the country are facing, both Democrat and Republican, noting that, for instance, they’ve been forced to start bidding against each other for items like masks and test kits.
“It’s on all of us to remember that the enemy is the virus, it’s not one another,” Whitmer said, adding, “A national strategy with national buying power that actually ensured everyone had equitable access to what we need when we need it would be the wisest thing to do. But we’re in this situation and like governors across this country, I’m gonna do everything I can.”