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Trump hosts Ducey at White House

Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey explains the state’s falling positivity rates to President Donald Trump at the White House on August 5, 2020. 

(The Center Square) – President Donald Trump praised Arizona’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic Wednesday in his meeting with Gov. Doug Ducey.

The governor met with Trump and Dr. Deborah Birx to discuss the state’s recent successes in slowing the rate of COVID-19 infections.

“I’m proud of you,” Trump said of Ducey and the progress Arizona has made. “It’s a great success.”

Without taking a “victory lap,” Ducey touted the White House’s month-long plan to slow the spread that his office elected to have Arizona participate in and extend for two more weeks.

“We had our [seven-day rolling] positivity as low as 4 percent,” Ducey said, adding that it had again climbed before falling and now sits around 10 percent as of yesterday.

Birx praised Arizonans’ acceptance of measures implemented to slow the spread of COVID-19.

“Governor Ducey walked that with us and we’ve demonstrated now that you can keep a state open and retail open if you do these five common-sense pieces and it’s saved the hospitals and saved Arizonans,” she said.

Several states have replicated the model used in Arizona, Birx said.

The Arizona Department of Health Services reported 1,698 new cases of COVID-19 Wednesday morning, attributing 87 more deaths to the virus. The state has performed more than 1.2 million tests and found 182,203 cases of infection since March.

A reporter asked the president and Ducey about their opinions of mail-in voting.

“I can tell you: in Florida, they’ve done a very good job with it. In Nevada, it would be a disaster. In New York, it’s been a disaster. In many other places, it’s been a total catastrophe,” Trump said. “You know what’s going on in New York with Carolyn Maloney. I think they have to have a new election.”

Arizona has conducted elections with mail-in voting since 1992. Ducey said Arizona “does it right” and it would be difficult, if not impossible, to cheat.

“In Arizona, early ballots are going to be mailed in 60 days. This is no time to experiment,” the governor said. “This is a time to go with the tried and true, and in Arizona, our system works very well.”

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