The backlash against Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer’s stay at home order that prevents residents from traveling to their vacation homes or visiting neighbors has been intense. An online recall petition has garnered 200,000 signatures and 300,000 Facebook users joined a group titled “Michiganders Against Excessive Quarantine” in recent days.
Thousands have signed up to participate in a drive-in protest on Wednesday. Organizers want people to drive to Lansing and create a traffic jam, honk horns and flash signs.
Whitmer’s orders are draconian, and most of them unnecessary.
Whitmer’s executive action extended her prior stay-at-home order through the end of April and toughened it up.
For at least until then, Michiganders won’t be allowed to travel to in-state vacation residences. They are not permitted to use a motor boat. Business restrictions have been tightened, including that large stores must close areas “dedicated to carpeting, flooring, furniture, garden centers, plant nurseries, or paint,” among other measures. Violators could be fined or charged with a misdemeanor, though the practicality of strict enforcement was unclear.
Whitmer defended her order — orders that no other state governor has issued. Governor Andrew Cuomo of New York, where 10,000 people have died of the virus, has not issued such a draconian limit on people’s constitutional rights.
Whitmer said her actions are centered on flattening Michigan’s curve of infections. The new restrictions are aimed at curbing foot traffic in stores and preventing the outbreak — now focused around Detroit — from spreading quickly through the northern and more rural parts of the state, where the health system is not well equipped for a major outbreak.
The governor said she understood how difficult the measures could make things for business owners and those who are struggling with shutting down much of their livelihood.
The protest, planned by the Michigan Conservative Coalition and the Michigan Freedom Fund, purports to be nonpartisan.
“People always say: ‘Conservatives never protest because they are too busy working,'” the event page says. “Well, guess what. You’re not working — so it’s time to PROTEST.”
Matthew Seely, a spokesman for the Michigan Conservative Coalition, said the event is intended to be “nonpartisan.”
“We are asking people to become united on this one issue — all Michiganders to say we’ve gone too far,” he said. “We’re responsible adults and can be trusted to go out in public.”
Whitmer has been under consideration by Joe Biden for the vice presidential slot and she may have gone overboard trying to show what a decisive leader she can be. Instead, she proved she’s nothing more than a second-rate dictator wannabe. Telling people where they can and can’t go — even in a pandemic — demonstrates an unhealthy desire for control.
Whitmer may not be recalled. But it’s a safe bet she blew her chance at being Joe Biden’s running mate with this overreaction.
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