The Republican-controlled legislature in Michigan voted on Friday to limit the disaster powers of the governor’s office, but Gov. Whitmer has vowed to veto the bill despite public protests against her lockdown orders.
Michigan has been the site of many public protests against the stay-at-home orders made to stop the spread of coronavirus. Democratic Gov. Gretchen Whitmer has been the target of much of the protest.
Michigan has taken more strict measures to fight the pandemic, including the cordoning off of unessential sections in grocery and other stores to dissuade people from unnecessarily shopping.
“We haven’t seen the collaboration to this point that we’ve requested and what we would like to see,” said Speaker of the House Lee Chatfield, a Republican, of Whitmer.
“We are the voice of the people, and there are thousands of people across our state frustrated and have had their livelihoods taken away, and we want to ensure they can get back to work when it can be done safely,” he added, according to WDIV in Detroit.
‘I’m not going to sign any bill that takes authority away from me’
Whitmer signaled that she is not going to back down to the protests or the Republican demands, and said that she is going to veto the measures meant to limit her authority.
“I’m not going to sign any bill that takes authority away from me or from any future governor,” she said. “The powers of the Executive Office are incredibly important, especially in times of crisis where lives are on the line.”
She went so far as to demand that legislators respect the stay-at-home order and not leave their homes to vote.
“I find it odd that the Legislature has chosen to congregate against all the best practices against the spirit of the stay home, stay safe order, where the vast majority of their constitutes are observing these important actions,” Whitmer concluded.
On Friday, Whitmer extended the stay-at-home order to May 15 but eased some of the restrictions on businesses, including landscaping, golf courses, and other stores.
Over 35,000 people in Michigan have been confirmed to have the coronavirus, with 2,900 dying from the disease.
Here’s more about Whitmer’s pandemic response:
[embedded content] Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer extends stay-at-home order, with loosened restrictions www.youtube.com