The good news about the president’s national emergency declaration this afternoon is that states, counties and cities already are way ahead of the federal government in managing the coronavirus pandemic.
Donald Trump stood in the White House Rose Garden, bragged a bit about how well he’s done, heard slobbering praise from Mike Pence and then declared he bears “no responsibility at all” for many of the federal missteps that have occurred along the way.
Meanwhile, governors and other state and local officials are making their own declarations and announcing plans on how they intend to deal with the crisis.
Texas Gov. Greg Abbott was one of the governors who today announced a disaster declaration in Texas. He has mobilized local authorities and has made some key executive decisions. Gov. Abbott sounded like someone in charge. The president? Well, not so much.
Counties, too, have taken action. Dallas County Judge Clay Jenkins has ordered a ban on all activities that attract crowds of 250 people or more.
The crisis has been real since it broke some weeks ago. The president has sought to downplay what the World Health Organization has labeled a pandemic, which means it’s bad and likely to get worse.
So, with that I’ll listen more intently to messages coming from City Hall, from the county courthouse and from the State Capitol before I heed the words spewing from the White House.
Hey, I mean no disrespect. I just need guidance and steady counsel … neither of which is coming from the office of the president of the United States.