President Donald Trump applauds Gov. Greg Abbott's handling of Texas reopening during White House visit

President Donald Trump discusses Texas' COVID-19 response with Gov. Greg Abbott in the Oval Office on Thursday, May 7, 2020. Sipa USA via Reuters Connect/POOL

Gov. Greg Abbott met Thursday with President Donald Trump in the White House to discuss Texas' response to the coronavirus pandemic as the state moves forward with restarting its economy.

Speaking with reporters in the Oval Office, Abbott touted the state's ability to reopen while still responding to flare-ups in certain places. He also promoted the action he took hours earlier preventing Texans from being jailed for violating his executive orders. That decision was prompted by the case of Shelley Luther, a Dallas hair salon owner who was jailed earlier this week for illegally reopening her business. She was freed as Abbott was at the White House.

"We should not be taking these people and put them behind bars," Abbott said. "That is wrong, and that is why I issued another executive order today saying that in the state of Texas, no one can be put behind bars because they're not following an executive order. It's common sense."

"That includes the woman that we've been reading about with the beauty salon?" Trump asked.

"She's free today," Abbott replied.

"Good," Trump said.

Trump has been complimentary of Abbott's leadership during the pandemic, most recently of the governor's efforts to restore the Texas economy. The next phase of that process begins Friday, when Abbott is allowing barbershops and salons to reopen under certain restrictions.