The Weekender (4/24/20)
Welcome to the Democratic Governors Association’s Friday newsletter, The Weekender.
Let’s get started.
Washington: GOP gubernatorial candidates Tim Eyman and Joshua Freed have been leading protests against social distancing measures, which have been achieving their goal of flattening the curve and saving the lives of Washingtonians. Meanwhile, Governor Jay Inslee’s efforts to fight COVID-19 have been lauded by public health experts, and his approval rating among Washingtonians has skyrocketed to 74 percent.
Montana: After loaning his own campaign another $500,000, Greg Gianforte declined an invitation to participate in this Saturday’s virtual gubernatorial primary debate. Gianforte was the only candidate to decline to participate while other Republicans were happy to face voters and answer their questions. The debate will be held by the Montana Farmers Union and will focus on agricultural issues, including the effects of COVID-19 on the industry.
Start Spreading the News: Missouri Gov. Mike Parson Yelled At An Editorial Board for An Article They Didn’t Write
Just days after the Kansas City Star called out GOP Missouri Gov. Mike Parson for his dishonesty, Parson lied about another newspaper’s reporting. At his daily briefing, Parson tried to insist that the St. Louis Post-Dispatch Editorial Board used the phrase “simple-minded” to describe rural Missourians (which they did not). Turns out Parson had mixed up the St. Louis Post-Dispatch with a conservative blogger, so I guess we know where Parson gets his news.
Instead, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch had written an editorial about the risks some parts of rural America, including rural Missouri, face as cases of coronavirus are spreading faster than in urban centers. The editorial board warns Missourians outside of city centers to heed warnings from public health officials and calls out Parson for his handling of the pandemic, saying, “it didn’t help that rural state governors, including Missouri’s Mike Parson, were generally slower to issue stay-at-home orders than their urban counterparts, further signaling to their citizens that this wasn’t a threat.”
Parson’s slow reaction to the coronavirus has put rural Missourians in a dangerous spot. He was one of the last governors to issue a stay-at-home order, and he also failed to prepare Missouri’s rural infrastructure to care for its vulnerable populations. As critical rural hospitals closed across the state, Parson doubled down on his refusal to expand Medicaid, even though reports show that Medicaid expansion may determine if those hospitals can stay open through the pandemic.
Gov. Kate Brown Calls For Expanded Vote-By-Mail in Newsweek Op-Ed
Every State, Every Vote Co-Chair Oregon Gov. Kate Brown published an op-ed in Newsweek calling for the expansion of vote-by-mail as our country continues to grapple with the COVID-19 pandemic. In her op-ed, Brown argues that “in order to flatten the curve, no aspect of our society will remain untouched, and that means we also need to change the way we vote.” Ensuring that Americans can continue to safely exercise their right to vote means supporting a vote-by-mail program like the one that has operated successfully in Oregon for decades.
Gov. Kate Brown has been a champion of expanding access to the ballot box throughout her time in office. As governor, she has strengthened Oregon’s vote by mail program by ensuring pre-paid postage for all ballots.
Nevada Gov. Steve Sisolak on CNN with Anderson Cooper, responding to Las Vegas Mayor Carolyn Goodman’s comments that Las Vegas should reopen casinos and be a “control group” for coronavirus. Sisolak says he “will not allow Nevadans to be used as a control group or placebo.”
Washington Gov. Jay Inslee on ABC’s The View, saying Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s statement that states should consider bankruptcy is “nuts.”
Illinois Gov. JB Pritzker on MSNBC with Rachel Maddow, explaining the federal government’s failure to deliver tests, personal protective equipment, and ventilators to the state.
Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer on CNN with Anderson Cooper, talking testing, social distancing, and her plan to keep Michiganders safe.
“That’s just delusional to be making statements like that.”
- Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam on President Trump’s claim that the states have plenty of tests.
“There are more important things than living.”
Who said it? Send your answer to firstname.lastname@example.org and we’ll reveal the answer in the next Weekender!
If you guessed GOP Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis last week, you were right! DeSantis received many questions around his decision to classify WWE (professional wrestling) as an “essential service.” It has nothing to do with public health – DeSantis just thinks “people have been starved for content.”