Governor Edwards met with President Donald Trump Wednesday in the Oval Office and afterwards praised the federal government’s commitment to supply Louisiana with enough test kits so that it can test at least 200,000 individuals a month for the coronavirus. Edwards says that’s a critical piece in their COVID-19 response efforts.

“We believe that’s sufficient for us to move forward as we reopen the economy,” said Edwards.

Edwards is hopeful the state can begin a phase one reopening of the economy on May 16th.

It was six months ago when the President made several trips to Louisiana urging Republican voters to vote Edwards out of office. But both men are on the same page now and feel good about the direction Louisiana is heading.

JBE: “We are looking to moving ahead and just appreciate your work and your contribution to our efforts.”

POTUS: “It’s an honor working with you and people of Louisiana are great people and they’ve really gone through a lot.”

JBE: “I’ll just say they are the best.”

Edwards personally thanked the president for helping to provide federal resources in the early stages in the state’s fight against the spread of COVID-19.

“We’ve had a steep learning curve, but we are in a much better place,” said Edwards. “The field medical stations that you provided, the Navy medical personnel that you sent to Louisiana, the testing we had early was the key.”

Back home, Republican state lawmakers are bristling at Edwards' decision to extend Louisiana’s stay-at-home order through May 15. They're considering the extraordinary step of trying to override Edwards' emergency decision-making about the virus. Some GOP legislators — primarily in the House — are trying to rally support for a rare legal maneuver that would allow them to overturn possibly some or all of the governor’s disaster orders and proclamations.

(Story written by Jeff Palermo/Louisiana Radio Network and MELINDA DESLATTE/AP)

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