Biden: Governors should issue lockdowns ‘for the time being’ | TheHill

Democratic presidential candidate Joe BidenJoe BidenThe Hill’s Morning Report – Presented by Airbnb – House to pass relief bill; Trump moves to get US back to work Democratic fears rise again as coronavirus pushes Biden to sidelines Sanders charges forward with 2020 bid despite long odds MORE said Friday he would recommend that governors across the country issue temporary lockdowns in an effort to stem the spread of coronavirus.

“For the time being, I would,” Biden told CNN’s Anderson Cooper when asked if he would urge governors in every state implement a lockdown for several weeks.

“You don’t know who doesn’t have the virus,” the former vice president continued, noting that many people who may have the virus could be asymptomatic.

President TrumpDonald John TrumpDefense industrial base workers belong at home during this public health crisis Maduro pushes back on DOJ charges, calls Trump ‘racist cowboy’ House leaders hope to vote Friday on coronavirus stimulus MORE has so far declined to recommend a nationwide lockdown over COVID-19, something other countries such as Italy have done in an attempt to curb the spreading virus.

The United States on Friday had more than 100,000 confirmed cases of coronavirus, shortly after the U.S. moved into first in the world for the total number of cases, past Italy and China.

Amid rising figures, a number of governors across the country have issued temporary orders for residents to shelter in place, closing many restaurants and bars and keeping open those businesses deemed essential, such as grocery stores, medical facilities and gas stations.

Biden said Friday that he has spoken with a number of Democratic governors, including Jay InsleeJay Robert InsleeTrump questions need for 30,000 ventilators in New York Hospitals pushed to limit as coronavirus cases rise The Hill’s Morning Report – Presented by Airbnb – Trump, Dems close in on deal MORE (Wash.), Gretchen Whitmer (Mich.), Tom Wolf (Pa.) and John Bel Edwards (La.). Whitmer is a co-chair on Biden’s campaign.

The former vice president said he also spoke with Republican governors, but did not specifically name them.

Biden has used his now-completely digital campaign to counterprogram Trump’s response to the virus this week, using virtual television interviews, press briefings, roundtables and a new newsletter in an attempt to contrast Trump’s handling of the crisis with his own recommended approach.

The former vice president released a plan to bolster the economy amid the pandemic. Biden said the plan would accelerate aid to businesses that vow to keep their workers employed, expedite the delivery of unemployment insurance, pressure banks to provide loans to small businesses and lean on large companies seeking taxpayer assistance to emphasize “that they need to make hard commitments that the assistance will go toward their workers.”

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