Coronavirus crisis: Southern states take steps toward reopening


WASHINGTON (NEXSTAR) – Beaches and retail stores in South Carolina are beginning to open for business.

“I think it’s time. I think that every day that goes by, the economic havoc becomes worse,” Rep. Tom Rice (R-SC-7) said Tuesday.

Rice said he agrees with South Carolina Gov. Henry McMaster’s executive order that allows some stores and beaches to reopen with strict social distancing measures.

Congressman Ralph Norman (R-SC-5) is on board too.

“We cannot go back into business soon enough,” he said.

South Carolina Senator Lindsey Graham took to Twitter to support his governor. But Graham is not happy with his neighboring state of Georgia, where Gov. Brian Kemp said he’ll be reopening fitness centers and hair salons as early as Friday.

Graham tweeted that’s too fast and too soon.

In Alabama, the governor is also weighing proposals to reopen her state’s economy.

“Every governor is responsible for reading the numbers and doing what they think is best for their state,” Gov. Kay Ivey (R-AL) said Tuesday.

Ivey said, for her state, that means not fully reopening until the state has enough testing.

Senator Doug Jones (D-AL) agrees.

“We really need to ramp up testing big time before we really start opening up in a big way,” Jones said.

Jones called the reopening of some state economies premature.

“If we get hit again it would be really, really devastating,” he said.

He added that the scientific data will tell Alabama when it’s time to return to work.

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