Skubick: Whitmer says climbing COVID-19 concerns could lead to more restrictions


LANSING, Mich (WLNS) – Gov. Gretchen Whitmer has scrubbed plans to re-open Detroit casinos this week in part because there is a major new concern that parts of the state may be on the verge of a new spike of COVID-19 cases.  

The governor is talking exclusively with 6 News Capitol Correspondent Tim Skubick on how deep her concerns are at this critical moment.

Skubick: “Are we on the verge of a spike of the virus here in Michigan?”

Gov. Whitmer: “I’m concerned.”

Up until right now, the governor was hoping to move the entire state into “Phase 5” of her re-opening plans, including the Detroit casinos, this week.

Not any more.

“My hope was to do it this week,” explained the governor. “We’re not in a position to do that yet, we’ve got to get more data.”

That’s because the data she saw today raised her concerns.

“We had a data call today and I saw reports right here out of Ingham County that there were 12 or 14 cases of COVID-19, all of whom were participants to have been at an establishment in East Lansing,” said Whitmer. “It was featured on Twitter for having big crowds.”

The venue was Harper’s Restaurant, a popular MSU student hangout where social distancing was not the order of the day.

There have been other surges in Midland and Traverse City and the governor says some are letting their guard down, which could squander all the progress the state has made on flattening the virus curve.

“People are looking at us, wanting to be like us, yet people are dropping their guard,” said the governor. “The majority continue doing the right thing but my concern is that if people drop their guard, we’ll see outbreaks of COVID-19.”

Skubick: “Is there a chance you would have to restore old restrictions?”

Gov. Whitmer: “It’s very possible. Numbers in most areas are good but in other areas, we’re watching because we are concerned.”

Skubick: “On a scale of one to ten, your concern is?”

Gov. Whitmer: “It’s a constant eight.”

And that’s not where she wants to be. 

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