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Governors Decide They Don’t Care About Spike in Coronavirus Cases — Reopening Will Continue



President Donald Trump is rebooting his campaign to hold major rallies beginning on Juneteenth and he’ll visit the states of Florida, Arizona and North Carolina, among others. The problem, however, is that many of the states are having an increase in COVID-19 cases.

Arizona, in particular, has seen a dramatic increase in coronavirus cases, though it could be attributed to the state actually testing, when before it was difficult to get a test. Texas, where Trump is headed to a fundraiser Wednesday, had its worst week of hospitalizations and an increase in cases.

Politico reported that the GOP governors don’t care about the increase in cases and the danger it poses to their state. They’re reopening everything, even if it means their own citizens will die.

“In Arizona, where coronavirus patients are landing in the ICU in record numbers and a growing percentage of tests are coming back positive, the state health department over the weekend instructed hospitals to ‘fully activate’ emergency plans for the first time since March,” said the report. “There are no discussions about shutting down parts of the state, state health director Cara Christ told a local Fox station.”

In fact, cases are on the rise in 21 states in the U.S.

“In Texas, where total cases have shot up by one-third in the last two weeks, Republican Gov. Greg Abbott is moving ahead with plans to let virtually all businesses keep expanding capacity by the end of this week,” said Politico.

In Arkansas, GOP Gov. Asa Hutchinson swears the dramatic increase in infections and hospitalization has nothing to do with lifting restrictions. It’s unclear how he thinks people contracted the virus. He’ll lift all of his restrictions next week. Infections spiked in Arkansas by one-third and hospitalizations are up by 90 percent since Memorial Day weekend.

North Carolina is now reporting its highest levels of new COVID-19 infections, but it won’t stop President Donald Trump from rushing to the state. Gov. Roy Cooper said that he’ll keep existing rules in place but will only reinstitute restrictions as a “last resort.”

“We want to avoid going backwards if we possibly can,” said Cooper, who barred the GOP’s massive convention in the state over the summer.

At one point, COVID-19 was infecting more than 20,000 people each day in the United States and leaders were terrified. As the news has shifted to protests and police brutality, cases of the virus aren’t leading the headlines.

“I don’t know that anyone has the appetite for massive shutdowns again,” said Tennessee Health Secretary Lisa Piercey.

Public health experts are concerned that without the news coverage, people will neglect wearing masks, ignore handwashing and other key behaviors that help curb the virus. The recent spikes could mean that a steady burn of the infections will continue throughout the summer. When the fall comes, the expected uptick could be even more significant. That could mean even stricter mitigation restrictions.

“We always knew that once we returned back to the community, we had to do it carefully and that there would have to be a pause when we saw increases,” said American Public Health Association director Georges Benjamin. “That should always have been understood.”

“If people would use their head and follow advice that’s been given to them repeatedly, we would not be having the hot spots and the rise we see here,” said Republican South Carolina Gov. Henry McMaster. The state is still shut down and haven’t had a huge spike in cases.

Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear has said that he is willing to close things down if the number of people in the ICU increases again, but for now he’s fine with campgrounds and parks reopening. New cases have doubled in the state.

Read the full report.

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