DENVER – Colorado Gov. Jared Polis will meet with President Donald Trump at the White House Wednesday to discuss the on-the-ground situation regarding COVID-19 in Colorado and to bring a real-world perspective to the president, the governor said Monday.
The governor’s office confirmed to Denver7 Sunday that Polis would be meeting with the president Wednesday to call for more federal support for the state and for more testing supplies and personal protective equipment.
Polis said at a news conference Monday that he would be discussing getting additional resources for Colorado’s recovery and response efforts.
“It’s important for him to hear what’s really going on, on the ground. The fear; the anxiety; the health condition; the economic challenges the people of the country face,” Polis said. “I hope to bring those to him and make sure that he’s aware of what’s really going on in the real world.”
Polis said the president had invited him and North Dakota Gov. Doug Burgum to the White House for an hour-long meeting.
He said he would do his best to give President Trump an update on what the people of Colorado are feeling during the outbreak and how it has affected their lives.
Polis and state public health officials have talked for weeks about the need to increase testing and how they have had to go to the private market to secure both testing supplies and other necessary medical equipment, like PPE, while the federal government has lagged. The feds sent 100 ventilators to Colorado, and Polis has said that the administration promised more shipments of testing equipment and other supplies this month.
But they have also said that they had hoped the federal government would have been of more help sooner and that he wished the state hadn’t had to go around the federal government or have its supplies intercepted.
Polis said Monday that he would reiterate the testing realities in Colorado to the president and tell him, “We’re making progress but need to do a lot more to be able to get out of this.”
Polis said he would “work with anybody and everybody” to help the state of Colorado and that ideology and party were not important – he wants to help elevate the partnership between Colorado and the administration, he said.
Polis said he would be flying commercially and would wear a mask during his trip and that he would be “taking every precaution” while at the White House. And he said he wanted to make sure that the president realizes what real-world effects COVID-19 is having outside of Washington, D.C.
“There was really no way that I could say no to this opportunity to advance the needs of the people of Colorado with regard to improving our federal partnership for supplies, for testing, for personal protective equipment – and really to do my best to make sure that the president is not living in the ivory tower in the White House and is really aware of what’s going on across the entire country,” Polis said.
Polis will also be in Washington on the same day that the U.S. Supreme Court hears arguments in the Colorado “faithless electors” case.