Press Conference 07/14

"We are with you, and we are going to stay with you until we put the coronavirus completely in the past," said Vice President Mike Pence speaking to residents of Louisiana.

"To open up America, we have to open up America's schools," said Pence emphasizing the importance of having the PPE and supplies for reopening schools.

Pence announced that LSU's Alex Box Stadium will be administering COVID-19 testing.

Pence supports the mandates of Gov. John Bel Edwards. He said, "We all have a role to play. We want to encourage all residents of Louisiana to adhere to the guidance of state and local health officials."

Edwards said that Louisiana will exceed 1 million tests this week since the start of the pandemic.

"We look forward to the day that we put the virus behind us," said Edwards thanking Pence and White House officials for joining them today.

U.S. Sen. Bill Cassidy of Louisiana said that this is a public health crisis, which has a lead to an educational crisis, an economic crisis, an employment crisis and a family crisis.

"If we use our head, we can open our schools safely," said U.S. Sen. John Kennedy of Louisiana. "Not opening our schools will do our children so much more harm than the coronavirus ever can."

Kennedy said that all of our universities in Louisiana will be open this fall. He said he is going to challenge Louisiana universities to step up to the plate and help us do more testing that will help elementary and secondary get back on their feet.

"The rise in cases across the sunbelt are serious, but the people of Louisiana can be comforted to know that we are in a much stronger position to provide testing, PPE and medicines," said Pence. 

Edwards said that university learning will be a mixture of virtual and in-person learning.

"I'm very confident that our universities can develop plans to reopen campuses and restart sports programs," said Pence. 

"To every member of Louisiana, we want to make sure you know we are with you, and we are going to stay with you every step of the way," Pence said ending the press conference.