CAPITAL REGION -- North Country Congresswoman Elise Stefanik was among a small group of Republican legislators who met with President Donald Trump on Friday at the White House, where she offered praise for his response to the ongoing novel coronavirus pandemic.
Stefanik, who represents the 21st Congressional District, spoke directly with Trump at the beginning of the meeting, which focused on plans for re-opening the economy, which has been devasted by business shutdowns intended to slow spread of the virus.
“Thank you, Mr. President, for all of the support for New York state," said Stefanik, R-Schuylerville. "This has been a true partnership and the administration has stepped up, whether it’s been ventilators or building the Javits Center (temporary hospital), which was tremendously important."
She explained that people in her upstate New York district are eager to get back to work safely, adding that ,"our tourist businesses, our hotels, have been devastated, so as we talk about this transition, making sure that we allow our small businesses to get back to work safely is so incredibly important."
She went on to mention the crisis in dairy farming, which is economically important across upstate New York, including in her district.
Trump responded by citing the billions of dollars in federal money pledged to farmers during his administration, in compensation for price disruptions caused by the trade war with China, and more recently as part of efforts to stimulate the economy.
Among others at the meeting were House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, R-California, and some of Trump's biggest Congressional defenders, including Jim Jordan of Ohio, Devin Nunes of California, and Matt Gaetz of Florida. From New York, Rep. Lee Zeldin from Long Island was also present.
"I will continue to work closely with President Trump and my bipartisan colleagues in Congress on ideas and policies to restart and reinvigorate our economy as we combat and ultimately beat COVID-19," Stefanik said in a later statement.
Stefanik was named to Trump's Task Force on Reopening the Economy three weeks ago.