The Trump administration is putting together a coalition of 100 business leaders to help determine when and how to “reopen the economy.” Anonymous sources tell The Washington Post that four members of the Council for National Policy are forming their own coalition at the same time.
The outside effort from conservative groups is expected to be led by Stephen Moore, a conservative at the Heritage Foundation who is close with White House economic officials; Jenny Beth Martin, co-founder of the Tea Party Patriots; Adam Brandon, president of FreedomWorks, a conservative advocacy organization; and Lisa Nelson, chief executive of the American Legislative Exchange Council, a conservative organization with ties to the Koch brothers, according to the three people, who were granted anonymity to reveal details of an effort that had not been publicly revealed.The Washington Post
Stephen Moore, Jenny Beth Martin, Adam Brandon, and Lisa Nelson are all members of the pro-corporate, anti-democracy Christian extremist group, the Council for National Policy.
According to the Post’s anonymous sources and an interview with Richard Viguerie, another CNP member, the primary purpose for preventing lockdowns and other COVID-19 precautions is to increase Trump’s chances of winning in the upcoming election.
The Council already began lobbying Republicans in Congress to echo their messaging at the beginning of the month.
Three of the five people who spoke to the Washington Post without anonymity are Council members. The list includes Moore, Viguerie, and Newsmax CEO Chris Ruddy.
Months later, we learn that the coalition, the Save Our Country Task Force, was already guiding the response to COVID-19 even before the administration began building its official group. The CNP also began strategizing ways to combat mail-in voting in February, before the U.S. knew the virus was here.
The new coalition, called Save Our Country, officially debuted on April 27, as U.S. Covid deaths approached 55,000. Headed by economist Art Laffer, its maiden press release featured quotes from Brandon, Nelson, and Martin. “The long-term consequences of a prolonged societal shutdown outweigh the damage done by the virus itself,” Martin stated. “We must immediately reopen the economy.” Earlier that week, The New York Times reported that the Save Our Country coalition’s members were mobilizing their networks for state-level rallies, filing lawsuits, and commissioning polls, all to counter the lockdowns: “Nonprofit groups including FreedomWorks and Tea Party Patriots have used their social media accounts and text and email lists to spread the word about protests across the country.”The Washington Spectator