Trump says he told CDC he wants churches to reopen

The president spoke to the media during his trip to Michigan

Updated: May 21, 2020 - 10:21pm

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President Trump said Thursday that he considers houses of worship an "essential" part of America and that he told the Center for Disease Control and Prevention that he wants them reopened as part of the country's efforts to gradually recover from the coronavirus.

"People want to be in their churches," Trump said while visiting a Ford plant in Michigan. "It's wonderful to sit home and watch something on a laptop, but it can never be the same as being in a church and being with your friends, and they want to have it opened and I think that's going to be happening very shortly, very, very shortly."

He also suggested that CDC guidance on the issue could come out later in the day or Friday today.

When asked if he was placing more of a higher priority on the reopening of churches than on other entities reopening, Trump said no but that churches are "so important in terms of the psyche of our country."

The president was not seen wearing a mask during his tour of the Ford factory on Thursday, though he told reporters that he wore one in an area where the cameras were not present. "I had one on before. I wore one in this back area, but I didn't want to give the press the pleasure of seeing it," he said.

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