The Weekender (5/15/20)


Welcome to the Democratic Governors Association’s Friday newsletter, The Weekender.
Let’s get started.

Montana: As the next step in his years-long crusade against public land access, Gianforte refused to respond to an inquiry from the Montana Wildlife Fund on his public lands stance (nearly every other gubernatorial candidate gave a response). Gianforte can dodge questions all he wants, but we already know the answer – he doesn’t share Montanans’ values.
Missouri: The Kansas City Star Editorial Board urged GOP Gov. Mike Parson and the Missouri legislature to implement no-excuse absentee voting for the upcoming August and November elections. Even though nearly 3 in 4 voters are in favor of no-excuse vote-by-mail, Parson refused to back vote-from-home measures, claiming that absentee ballots are “more of a political issue.” Parson’s views on vote-from-home might be put to the test soon – the Missouri House passed an amendment on Wednesday to allow no-excuse absentee voting this year.

Vermont Gov. Phil Scott Stalls on Vote-By-Mail and Leaves Voters Vulnerable For Upcoming Election
GOP Gov. Phil Scott’s foot-dragging is threatening Vermonters’ constitutional right to vote in a free and fair election. Scott is blocking Vermont’s Democratic Secretary of State from sending mail-in ballots to all registered voters, a measure that is extremely popular among both Republicans and Democrats. In doing so, Scott is forcing Vermonters to decide between their health and their right to vote.
Vermont community groups are begging Scott to allow vote from home measures for the sake of public health, but Scott isn’t budging. He needs to make a decision soon – the Secretary of State has warned that the state might not have enough time to properly implement vote from home measures, which could lead to the same dangerous GOP-induced chaos we saw in Wisconsin.

Seeing Double: Two Polls Confirm Americans Believe Democratic Governors Are Doing A Better Job Than GOP Governors
Both Navigator Research and the Washington Post released polls showing Americans approve of Democratic governors’ handling of the coronavirus at higher levels than the Republican governors who are lifting restrictions based on political expediency instead of public health expertise.
Navigator Research found voters’ approval of Democratic governors’ handling of the coronavirus pandemic is 12% higher than Republican governors. The Washington Post found similar results – Republicans who have embraced hastily reopening their states received ratings of 60% or less (the average for all governors was 71%).
Democratic governors across the country took early action to protect their constituents from the coronavirus and its economic impacts. On the other hand, the public clearly understands Republican governors who endangered lives by refusing to shut down states left them vulnerable and they are not happy with their leadership.

Illinois Gov. JB Pritzker on CNN’s State of the Union, talking guidelines in his state for reopening and “not counting” on the White House for supplies.
Rhode Island Gov. Gina Raimondo on MSNBC’s Morning Joe, discussing her innovative methods for ramping up testing and contact tracing.
Wisconsin Gov. Tony Evers on CNN with Don Lemon, denouncing the state Supreme Court’s decision to strike down his stay at home order. Recent polling found 69% of Wisconsin voters agree with the stay at home order, and Gov. Evers is concerned this decision could result in unnecessary coronavirus deaths.

“Elections and the right to vote are foundational to our democracy. No Californian should be forced to risk their health in order to exercise their right to vote.”

“There could be even a conflict of interest issue there. Because it would be looking at making a judgment call on somebody that may be potentially running against me in the future.”
Who said it? Send your answer to and we’ll reveal the answer in the next Weekender!
If you guessed former GOP New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie last week, you were right! Christie said “there are going to be deaths” and pushed for reopening the country, contradicting the advice of public health officials.