President Trump is preparing to announce a second coronavirus task force solely focused on reopening the nation’s economy, multiple sources tell CNN.
Senior aides such as Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and National Economic Council Director Larry Kudlow have been solely focused on the issue of restarting a wounded American economy for weeks, along with a coterie of aides.
But in recent days, inside and outside advisers have appealed to Trump to formally create a separate task force in order to streamline the process so it can focus primarily on reopening the economy. This task force would likely include senior staff from the Treasury Department, the National Economic Council, the Labor Department and the Department of Commerce.
But it wouldn’t only have administration officials involved. There has been outreach to figures such as Gary Cohn, Blackstone CEO Steve Schwarzman, Art Laffer and even major sports teams and well-known athletes.
Other Trump allies have proposed naming a recovery “czar” from the private sector to oversee efforts to revive the consumer economy and address unemployment after coronavirus forced the closure of businesses across sectors.
Influential conservatives have floated Laffer as the leader of the task force, and he has presented some ideas to senior White House aides on a plan to revive the economy. His plans have included a proposal to tax nonprofits, cut the pay of some public officials and offer a payroll tax holiday.
Trump awarded Laffer a presidential medal of freedom last year, but the White House hasn’t yet offered him a position on a new panel, according to a senior administration official.