WATCH: Biden Blasts Trump’s Plan to Reopen America, Says “I wouldn’t call it a plan”

During a town hall on CNN on Thursday, Joe Biden attacked Trump’s plan to reopen America as a “punt” and said “I wouldn’t call it a plan.”

Joe Biden:

I wouldn’t call it a plan, I think what he’s done, he’s kind of punted.  He’s decided that he’s not…he doesn’t have the right to make the call for the country. And he talks about phases that, in a generic sense, seem to me, from all I’ve learned and all I’ve listened and my morning briefs from the docs I talk to, is not irrational, but it doesn’t give you any hard guidelines.

Per Newsweek, President Donald Trump released guidelines to states for rolling back quarantine measures in the United States amid the new coronavirus pandemic but said the situation in each state will dictate when and how it reopens.

Trump’s announcement, made during the White House Coronavirus Task Force’s daily briefing, outlined when and how governors should reopen their state. The guidelines broke the reopening of the country to enable Americans to return to their jobs and engage in social gatherings into three phases based on outbreak conditions.

“We are in the next front of our war which we are calling, ‘Opening Up America Again,'” Trump said on Thursday. “As I have said for some time now, a national shutdown is not a sustainable longtime solution. To preserve the health of our citizens we must also preserve the health and functioning of our economy.”

Trump has been criticized for pushing to reopen businesses to save the economy at the expense of public health, but the president said on Thursday that the guidelines are based on “hard, verifiable data.” Before moving onto “phased openings,” the Trump administration said it provided a “gating criteria” for states or regions to satisfy within a 14-day period.

Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute for Allergy and Infectious Diseases, called the gating criteria a “hurtle” for reopening. Some regions, states and locations are already fulfilling some of the criteria, he said. Before moving onto the second and third phases, the gating criteria must once again be met, so he noted there are safeguards for each phase of the reopening.

Before moving into any phase, according to the Opening Up America Again guidelines, the states must have a downward trajectory of both influenza-like illnesses and COVID-19-like syndromic cases and also should either be a downward trajectory of documented cases or positive tests as a percent of total tests.

Phase 1 (States and regions that satisfy gating criteria):

  • Vulnerable individuals should continue to shelter in place
  • All individuals when in public places should maximize physical distance from others
  • Socializing in groups of more than 10 people in situations where appropriate physical distancing cannot be maintained should be avoided
  • Non-essential travel should be minimized
  • Employers should encourage telework whenever possible or return to work in phases with common areas closed
  • Schools that are closed should remain closed
  • Visits to senior living facilities and hospitals should be prohibited
  • Large venues, such as movie theaters, restaurants and sports arenas, can operate under strict physical distancing protocols
  • Elective surgeries can resume
  • Gyms can open if they adhere to strict physical distancing and sanitation protocols
  • Bars should remain closed

Phase 2 (States and regions with no evidence of a rebound and that satisfy the gating criteria a second time):

  • Vulnerable individuals should continue to shelter in place
  • All individuals when in public places should maximize physical distance from others
  • Socializing in groups of more than 50 people in situations where appropriate physical distancing cannot be maintained should be avoided
  • Nonessential travel can resume
  • Employers should encourage telework whenever possible and feasible with business operations or return to work with common areas closed
  • Schools can reopen
  • Visits to senior living facilities and hospitals should be prohibited
  • Large venues, such as movie theaters, restaurants and sports arenas, can operate under moderate physical distancing protocols
  • Bars may operate with diminished standing-room occupancy, where applicable and appropriate

Phase 3 (States and regions with no evidence of a rebound and that satisfy the gating criteria a third time):

  • Vulnerable individuals can resume public interactions but should practice physical distancing
  • Low-risk populations should consider minimizing time spent in crowded environments
  • Unrestricted staffing of worksites can resume
  • Visits to senior care facilities and hospitals can resume
  • Large venues, such as movie theaters, restaurants and sports arenas, can operate under limited physical distancing protocols
  • Bars may operate with increased standing-room occupancy, where applicable and appropriate

A specific timeline wasn’t issued for the reopening of states. Trump said governors will have the flexibility to determine that on their own.