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ATLANTA – President Donald Trump says he told Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp he disagreed with some of his decisions to reopen businesses in the state.

“I told the governor of Georgia, Brian Kemp, that I disagree strongly with his decision to open certain facilities which are in violation of the Phase 1 guidelines for the incredible people of Georgia,” Trump said during a news conference Wednesday.

“At the same time, he must do what he thinks is right,” Trump said. “But I disagree with him on what he’s doing.”

This was after Kemp announced Monday that gyms, barbershops and nail salons could reopen Friday.

Trump went on to say he thought it was “just too soon” to reopen salons and spas.

“They can wait a little bit longer, because safety has to predominate,” Trump said. “I told the governor very simply that I disagree with his decision, but he has to do what he thinks is right.”

The president was questioned again later in the news conference about why he disagreed with Kemp and if he would advise small businesses to listen to him or their governor.


“I’d like them to listen to their governors, all of their governors. I have the right to do, if I wanted to clamp it down, but I have respect for our governors. They know what they are doing,” Trump said.

Trump said he has a lot of respect for Kemp, reminding reporters that he helped get the governor elected.

“I worked very hard for his election. He beat their superstar (Stacey Abrams). … He also was way down in a primary and ended up winning a primary after I came out and endorsed him. So a lot of good things, and there’s a lot of good feeling between myself and Brian Kemp. I like him a lot,” Trump said.


Trump said he just disagrees with reopening things so soon.

“When you have spas, beauty parlors, and I love these people – I know the people from spas and beauty parlors, tattoo parlors – Bikers for Trump, a lot of tattoos. I love them. I love these people. And barbershops, these are great people. But you know what? Maybe you wait a little longer until you get into Phase 2. So do I agree with him? No, but I respect him, and I will let him make his decision,” Trump said.

Kemp took to Twitter on Wednesday night to respond to the president’s comments.

“I discussed Georgia’s plan to reopen shuttered businesses for limited operations with @POTUS. I appreciate his bold leadership and insight during these difficult times and the framework provided by the White House to safely move states forward,” Kemp said in his series of tweets.



“I am confident that business owners who decide to reopen will adhere to Minimum Basic Operations, which prioritize the health and well-being of employees and customers,” Kemp said.