County Commissioner to Trump: ‘Cancel your visit to Washtenaw County’

US President Donald Trump walks off Marine One on the south lawn of the White House on May 17, 2020 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Tasos Katopodis/Getty Images) (2020 Getty Images)

ANN ARBOR – Jason Morgan, Chair of Washtenaw County’s Board of Commissioners, has written an open letter to President Donald Trump calling on him to cancel his planned visit to the area on Thursday.

President Trump is scheduled to visit Ford’s Rawsonville plant in Ypsilanti, which has been producing ventilators during the pandemic.

In his letter, Morgan said that lack of communication from White House personnel to local officials about the visit leads him to believe it must be a campaign stop.

“I am deeply troubled by the President of the United States visiting our community to campaign during a public health crisis,” he wrote.

For its part, the White House said the stop in Ypsilanti is part of a series of visits by the president to recognize and thank businesses producing PPE during the pandemic.

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Morgan cited four of Trump’s recent actions that cause him concern, including his incorrect tweet on Wednesday morning in which he threatened to withhold disaster aid from Michigan over Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson’s decision to send absentee ballots to all Michiganders.

“Your tweet incorrectly stated that absentee ballots will be mailed - in fact, residents will receive absentee ballot applications,” wrote Morgan.

Trump later deleted his original tweet and posted an updated version.

Morgan also mentioned Trump’s May 19 statement in which he said he would not wear a mask to the Ypsilanti plant despite requests from the company to do so. He said other concerns include the president’s April 17 tweet in support of armed protesters at the state capitol in Lansing and his April 23 comments during a White House press briefing that suggested ingesting disinfectant could cure COVID-19.

“Mr President, if you are going to visit Washtenaw County to campaign during this pandemic, I ask that you change your rhetoric, commit to supporting our public health experts and duly elected leaders of the State of Michigan, encourage residents to stay home and stay safe, and provide the critical resources necessary to directly support state and local governments who’ve been on the front lines of this crisis,” concluded Morgan.

President Trump has not responded to Morgan’s letter.

About the Author:

Meredith has worked for WDIV since August 2017 and was voted one of Washtenaw County's best journalists in 2019 by eCurrent's readers. She covers the community of Ann Arbor and has a Master's degree in International Broadcast Journalism from City University London, UK.