Not everyone was happy with the responsible decision by Governor Doug Ducey to extend the Stay at Home order for Arizona due to the Coronavirus until May 15.
Surprisingly, the chorus of dissent came from the extreme branch of his own party.
Arizona Legislative District 16 Representative Kelly Townsend, the legislator who “lost it” when she wanted to silence speakers at a public hearing who protested bills designed to suppress minority voting, did not take the news well. Either did other Republican lawmakers like Nancy Barto, Bret Roberts, and Majority Leader Warren Petersen.
All have condemned the decision.
According to reporting by Jeremy Duda at the Arizona Mirror, Peterson posted a message on Facebook which stated:
“I’m asking my colleagues in the legislature to join me in overturning the arbitrary extension of the stay at home order. In case you didn’t know, anyone can stay at home.”
Ms. Townsend was a little more upset, especially at the Governor’s threats to fine or imprison business owners for opening before they are allowed: She tweeted:
“Threatening my constituents with jail time is the last straw, @dougducey. I will be using all options to bring Arizona back into a Constitutional state. Who is with me? #OpenAZNow #ArizonaStrong”
The Democrats at the Arizona State Legislature, in a plot twist written in scientific reality, agreed with the actions of the Governor. House Democratic Leader Charlene Fernandez issued a statement on April 28, 2020:
“We know that Arizona’s stay-at-home order is not intended to completely stop the spread of COVID19, it is intended to slow the spread so that our healthcare system and our precious frontline healthcare workers are not overwhelmed. The Center for Disease Control has set out criteria to safely reopen states, including downward trajectories in positive cases and robust testing programs, including antibody testing, as well as plans to protect the health and safety of workers and mass transit users. Arizona does not yet meet all of these standards — while our healthcare system appears to have the capacity, our curve of infection is not yet bent — so it was a good decision to extend Arizona’s stay-at-home order until May 15 with modifications. Gov. Ducey said that Arizona is heading in the right direction, and we certainly hope that is the case, but we need more tests and more decreasing trendlines. We would also like to see more transparency, data, and urgency in addressing Arizona’s COVID19 outbreak in areas where it is the most prevalent and potentially deadly including on the Navajo Nation, in our long-term care facilities, and in correctional facilities.”
The extreme members of the Republican caucus at the Legislature need to take a valium and seriously read up on the science of this virus like Ducey and his team apparently have.
Huffing and Puffing like these fringe scientifically illiterate individuals are in their calls to reopen the state and the legislature is sheer idiocy right now.
It is prudent, as EJ Montini said in his April 29 piece criticizing Townsend indicated, to take steps that ensure the safety of all Arizonans and plan for the gradual reopening of the state by following all health and safety guidelines.
Listening to blowhards like Townsend, Petersen, and others, who are not even pretending to follow the CDC guidelines, could risk lives.
Do not follow their lead.