Source: The New York Times

While the federal government’s response has been lackluster, Governor Cooper has put in proactive, steady work to achieve as much as possible for North Carolina amidst the coronavirus outbreak.

Many states are receiving far less in equipment from the federal government than requested. According to the Charlotte Observer, Cooper says the state has only received about one-third of the requested equipment and medical supplies from the federal government.

Despite those setbacks, on a conference call with the president and governors, Governor Cooper told Trump: “As much as you can send us is very much appreciated,” according to the New York Times. “Many governors have been tempered in their criticisms,” the Times writes, “acknowledging the need for a solid working relationship with the president.”

Still, the federal response has been found lacking. 

Governor Asa Hutchingson, a Republican from Arkansas, said on Meet the Press that, “We’ve been outbid by another state after we had the order confirmed,” echoing a sentiment from other governors. Hutchinson likened the competition to a “global jungle.” 

In Illinois, the Chicago Sun Times described the competition as the Wild West, with government officials racing down highways in order to present physical checks for millions of dollars to middlemen orchestrating purchases of medical equipment from China. 

According to Simon Johnson, a professor at the MIT Sloan School of Management, the haphazard approach by the federal government could lead to a poor response in the U.S. “What’s going to happen is if the states all go after the P.P.E individually, it will not get deployed nationally in a way that makes sense,” Johnson said. “It’s every man or woman for themselves.”

Mark Sanford, former Republican governor of South Carolina, told the Times, “I’d say there’s always a dance between any governor and sitting administration in knowing that you have to draw between the lines and look for ways of working constructively with that administration regardless of your party.”

Though the federal response is still lacking, Governor Cooper continues working to acquire as much as possible from the Trump Administration for North Carolinians.

Read the full article about how governors are navigating the federal response during COVID-19 in the New York Times.