Does Gretchen Whitmer Really Think 'Personal Responsibility' Will Do Anything to Covid Rates?

Illustration for article titled Does Gretchen Whitmer Really Think 'Personal Responsibility' Will Do Anything to Covid Rates?
Photo: Drew Angerer (Getty Images)

With nearly 6,900 new covid-19 cases and 74 new deaths on Saturday, Michigan currently has the highest rate of infection in the United States, the Associated Press reports. In an effort to curb those alarming stats, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer is now calling on residents of her state to exercise “personal responsibility” rather than order schools and restaurants to shut down as she did last year.

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“Policy alone won’t change the tide,” she told the AP. “We need everyone to step up and to take personal responsibility.” The governor added that she requested additional vaccine doses from the federal government to assist in slowing the spread of the virus, a strategy that Lt. Gov. Garlin Gilchrist argued in favor of during a recent CNN appearance, but was turned down.

It’s understandable, to a degree, why Whitmer would want to avoid mandating closures like she did last year, considering all the violent threats (and a kidnapping plot!) she had to endure after doing so last year. But the approach she has chosen, one that could have been “lifted from the playbook of a Republican elected official,” per The New York Times, just seems so useless. It might help to improve her reputation among the GOP members of Michigan’s state legislature, but I’m not sure her actions will help anyone else.

Freelance journalist (GQ, W, Esquire, elsewhere), here on weekends

DISCUSSION

katiekeys
katie_keys

Sure but it’s not her fucking fault the state Supreme Court removed her ability to make emergency declarations without approval from the state legislature. She literally can’t do as you suggest without convincing a bunch of conservative Republican dumbasses to go along with it, which isn’t going to happen.

https://www.pewtrusts.org/en/research-and-analysis/blogs/stateline/2020/11/17/gop-lawsuits-restrain-governors-covid-19-actions

https://www.detroitchamber.com/covid19/michigan-supreme-court-attorney-general-decisions-leave-questions-on-gov-s-emergency-powers-states-reopening/

I am used to Jezebel showing it’s whole ass on political issues, and for some reason the NYT article doesn’t really talk about the lawsuit restrictions. But you don’t gotta make it a personal attack on a woman who is literally doing her best.