Governor responds to criticism of orders aimed at stopping spread of COVID-19

Posted at 6:29 PM, Apr 13, 2020
and last updated 2020-04-13 22:20:58-04

LANSING, Mich. (WXYZ) — Governor Gretchen Whitmer knows not everyone is happy with her.

A petition on had as of six this evening about 187,000 signatures. It called for the recall of the governor, criticizing her for “closing and banning various non essential business’s and activities while leaving others open.”

The Michigan Freedom Fund and Michigan Conservative Coalition are planning a rally against the governor.

“Everyone, every citizen, every business owner needs to get out of their house, out of their chair and get in their car, or truck, or anything that is legal to drive on taxpayer funded roads. Then drive to Lansing to circle the Michigan Capitol Building at 100 N. Capitol Avenue at noon on April 15,” said the event page for the protest.

“I support people’s right to demonstrate and use their voice. I hope that as people are looking at social media they are dispelling and taking on the dissemination of demonstrably inaccurate information. This group is funded in large part by the DeVos family. I think it is really inappropriate for a sitting member of the president’s cabinet to be waging political attacks on any governor, but obviously on me here at home. They should disavow it. I urge people to stay home and stay safe,” said Gov. Whitmer.

The DeVos family spokesperson released the following statement about what Whitmer said:

Contrary to the Governor’s statements, the DeVos family hasn’t funded this protest nor has it offered prior support to the organizing entity. They understand the frustration of fellow Michiganders however, as elements of the governor’s top-down approach appear to go beyond public safety. Michigan deserves competent governance – not baseless attacks.

The governor addressed misinformation she is seeing on-line. For example many, including The View’s Meghan McCain have criticized her for allegedly banning the sale of carseats - after seeing a meme.

“First and foremost nothing in the stay at home order prohibits people from buying car seats for their children. You can buy buy spray. You can buy American flags. I have not banned homeschooling,” said the governor.

Last week on 7 Action News Republican State Senator Peter Lucido called for regional restrictions for the sake of businesses outside areas hardest hit in Michigan.

The governor said rural hospital systems don’t have capacity if the virus hits their communities hard.

The governor also said that she too does not want restrictions in place.

“We just know that the fewer people who are out and about the less it can spread and threaten our lives and economy.

Governor Gretchen Whitmer said economists and epidemiologists tell her we need fewer people out to make sure our medical system doesn’t get overwhelmed and people don’t die right now.The state’s Chief medical Officer Dr. Joneigh Khaldun said while there are still many new cases and deaths every day - it is appears we are making progress.

“We are starting to see early signs of a plateau,” said Dr. Khaldune during the governor’s press conference on Monday.

“I know there are a lot of people around our state that are hopeful we can open rural parts of the state. People who believe the stay home stay safe order shouldn’t apply to them need to understand COVID19 can be carried by someone without symptoms for days,” said the governor.

The governor also announced that she and a coalition of governor’s are calling on the Trump administration to allow for a special enrollment period for health care under the Affordable Care Act. She says the government needs to remove barriers to getting health coverage for people impacted by the pandemic.