Trump calls for opening of America's churches 'right now'

Donald Trump

"Today I'm identifying houses of worship-churches, synagogues and mosques-as essential places that provide essential services", he said.

Pundits were quick to blast Trump's announcement.

Trump emphasized, "I call upon governors to allow our churches and places of worship to open right now".

"We have a First Amendment", White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany said, moments after Trump left the podium. Many millions of Americans embrace worship as an essential part of life.

President Trump called on governors to allow houses of worship to reopen this weekend. If the governors refuse to allow the houses of worship to reopen immediately, this very weekend, "I will override the governors", he said.

In some areas, churches have opened under strict social distancing rules, while in others, pastors and priests have held services outdoors, with worshippers staying in their cars.

Coronavirus: Quarantine plans for United Kingdom arrivals unveiled
But despite working closely with the French authorities, Patel said arrivals from France would have to go into quarantine. The Government has also threatened to carry out spot checks around the country to make sure people are complying.

The White House on Thursday refused to cancel President Donald Trump's upcoming Memorial Day visit to the Fort McHenry National Monument and Historic Shrine in Baltimore, Maryland, despite Mayor Jack Young's request.

It's not clear what authority Trump has to override states who wish to keep houses of worship closed.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is issuing guidance for communities of faith at Trump's direction.

Dr. Deborah Birx, coordinator of the White House's coronavirus task force, said faith leaders should speak with local health departments about reopening and that people with high-risk factors in places with a high number of cases should consider waiting awhile.

"I said, 'You better put it out.' And they're doing it", Trump said during a tour of a Ford Motor Co plant repurposed to make ventilators in MI. When the Knoxville, Tennessee government began to allow people to go to church again, it told churches, "t$3 he physical taking of communion/sacrament should not be performed due to the serial breaking of physical distancing across a congregation". If there's any question, they're gonna have to call me, but they're not gonna be successful in that call.

"Trump and First Lady Melania Trump will again lead the American people in solemn remembrance of those fearless American patriots who laid down their lives so we can live in the land of the free", the official said in a statement.

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