VanderWall issues statement on governor’s latest restrictions

LANSING, Mich. — After Gov. Gretchen Whitmer on Monday extended her administration’s order severely limiting activity throughout the state through Sunday, Dec. 20, Sen. Curt VanderWall, R-Ludington, issued the following statement:

“While I fully support working to slow the spread of the coronavirus, it is unconscionable for the governor to continue to take actions apart from sound science that end up harming Michigan job providers.

“The governor has again closed Michigan restaurants and other small businesses, though the data does not indicate they are prominent sources of virus spread.

“Restaurants offered safe work plans months ago that would allow them to continue to safely operate, such as no sitting at the bar, no standing-only tables, and no waiting in the lobby.

“Restaurants and bars have worked to be willing partners in providing solutions, and yet they continue to be scapegoated. Following Gov. Whitmer’s announcement of the extended shutdown, two additional restaurants in my district have closed for good. Her decisions are destroying livelihoods.

“Not only that, the governor’s actions are adversely affecting our health. A recent Gallup poll shows there has been a nine-point decline in Americans’ assessment of their mental health since 2019. Declining mental health leads to declining physical health.

“We need a fact-based and data-driven plan to fight this pandemic developed in consultation with Michiganders’ direct voice — the Legislature.

“The Michigan Supreme Court ruled that the governor acted unconstitutionally when she acted alone on COVID-19. Unfortunately, with today’s action she continues to defy the court’s ruling.

“I urge the governor to work together with the Legislature to craft a response that keeps people safe from the virus without tanking our economy, people’s financial well-being, and our collective mental health.

“As always, we are eager to work with Gov. Whitmer. I hope she no longer ignores the people’s representatives.”