Michigan Woman Defies State Travel Advisory

Arhaq

Interstate traveller Gretchen Whitmer of Lansing, Michigan appears in a 2019 photo.



Photo:

rebecca cook/Reuters

At least one Michigan resident has had it with the state’s seemingly endless series of aggressive and ineffective restrictions and recommendations against individual liberty. And she just might inspire a nationwide revolt against Covid rules that continue to burden citizens in many states—even after the administration of more than 213 million vaccine doses nationwide.

David Eggert reports for the Associated Press on the plucky Michigander who was not about to let misguided state policy deny her a chance to visit a cherished family member.

Gretchen Whitmer,

a resident of Lansing, appears to have hit her personal lockdown limit sometime within the last several months. And haven’t we all? But what’s especially encouraging about her rejection of Michigan Covid policy is that she is its principal author. According to the AP report:

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer traveled out of state more than a month ago to visit her elderly father, a snowbird who has lived in Florida and has a chronic disease, her office said Monday.

The disclosure confirmed reporting by the Lansing-based publication MIRS. It came weeks after the governor warned the public about spring break trips, particularly to Florida, amid a surge in coronavirus cases. Two of her top aides, including Michigan’s health director, vacationed in southern states despite a state recommendation to avoid travel.

Now that Ms. Whitmer and her colleagues have joined the campaign against Whitmer policy, their example could be extremely powerful. The Democratic governor’s rejection of her own advice was eminently sensible. Her father, fortunate to live in the Sunshine State, where policy prioritizes the protection of senior citizens, had already been vaccinated at the time of her visit. Let’s hope their special time together wasn’t spoiled by some cranky family member insisting on masks even for the vaccinated.

Let’s also hope that Michigan residents outside the public sector will also be free to be with the people they love. The AP has more:

House Appropriations Committee Chairman Thomas Albert, a Lowell Republican, said he understands the desire to visit an ill relative.

“But I have heard countless stories of heartbroken Michiganders who wanted to visit sick family members during this pandemic and haven’t been able to do so,” he said. “I don’t understand how the governor thinks it’s OK for her and members of her administration to travel out of state, while issuing recommendations to the rest of us that we stay home.”

After fully embracing the Covid policy panic for most of the last year, perhaps the governor was able to gain a new perspective as she quietly travelled out of state. Perhaps the trip’s disclosure will hasten the day when Ms. Whitmer will answer the question recently posed by Ingrid Jacques in the Detroit Free Press: When is the governor going to ”set Michigan free”? Added Ms. Jacques:

At some point – and it should be soon – Whitmer will need to stop acting like the mother-in-chief, telling Michiganians where they can go and how many others can go with them and demanding they all wear masks.

There’s reason to hope that the governor has taken this message to heart. It’s just a start but Ms. Whitmer seems to have finally and mercifully begun ignoring the shutdown chorus and its credentialed cries for caution. She has lately resisted suggestions to lock down Michigan even harder.

Meanwhile as she considers the Florida model, Gov. Whitmer can observe a state that wisely prioritized the protection of the vulnerable while allowing people at low risk to lives their lives and children to remain in classrooms. The Sunshine State has both a lower per capita Covid death toll and a lower unemployment rate than Michigan. It’s time for Ms. Whitmer to set herself and her neighbors free.

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In Case Anyone Needed Another Reason to Leave Oregon

On Gov. Whitmer’s next trip to Florida she may encounter a few West Coasters changing planes at DTW on their way to live in jurisdictions with more sensible governance. Actually, at this point many Oregonians would probably settle for governance of any kind.

Bret Weinstein writes at UnHerd about a notice posted at a Portland bakery called Petunia’s:

The sign is Petunia’s special take on a Portlandian phenomenon that my wife Heather has come to call a “don’t-hurt-me wall” — a now-widespread attempt by local business owners to make anarchists think twice before vandalising their shop or café.

“We are a small, women and locally owned business,” Petunia’s sign pleads. “We are struggling like so many of us in this hard time, and love our community. Please don’t cause us any damage.” Welcome to Portland; the progressive dream that has turned into a nightmare…

… negotiating with vandals has become an essential skill. Indeed, Portland is full of signs in windows and on lawns pleading with anarchists to move on and hurt someone else. These residents know they cannot depend on the police to either prevent crimes or arrest those who commit them, and who can’t manage to come together and face down a small but violent mob of misanthropes.

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Another Day, Another Trillion

Brett Samuels reports in The Hill:

The White House is readying another massive spending proposal that would cover child care, universal pre-K and community college tuition, even as the path forward on its $2.3 trillion infrastructure package remains unclear.

President Biden is expected to outline his American Families Plan proposal before delivering a joint address to Congress on April 28. The White House has not provided details on the plan, but it is expected to address so-called human infrastructure like child care and family care programs, with a price tag that could hit $1 trillion.

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James Freeman is the co-author of “The Cost: Trump, China and American Revival.”

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