It’s been a brutal year.

COVID-19 has carved a deadly path across the globe. Since the first two cases were identified in Michigan just over one year ago, thousands of our friends, family members, colleagues and neighbors have lost their lives to the virus.

Isolated by scientifically questionable – at best – government shutdowns, others lost their lives to despair. Still others believe they’ve lost loved ones as a result of disastrous decisions made by that same state government. Michigan’s kids have lost months – or even more – of education.

Hundreds of thousands have lost their livelihoods, their life savings, and their food security.

Through it all, Governor Gretchen Whitmer has exercised nearly unlimited unilateral control over the state’s response to COVID-19, and over residents’ rights and freedoms.

She outlawed shopping for infant car seats and gardening supplies.

She put thousands of small businesses and restaurants permanently out of business.

She banned boating. When she finally lifted her nonsensical order, her husband was busted pushing his weight around up north trying to get their boat out of storage and into the water before anyone else in the local queue.

Under her disastrous and deadly unchecked control, at least 5,600 nursing home residents and staff have lost their lives. We don’t know the real number – the state refuses to release public records, prompting a new lawsuit from Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Charlie LeDuff.

Whitmer was one of only a small handful of governors in the nation who actively and intentionally imported COVID-19 positive patients into nursing homes among the state’s most at-risk residents.

It was a nightmarish policy that flew in the face of the science and the guidance of local experts who begged her to do something else. Now, a year later, it’s a policy that’s even prompted discussions about criminally charging the Governor with manslaughter.

When the immunization arrived, she so thoroughly bungled the state’s vaccination rollout, Michigan ranked 44th in the nation for getting shots in arms. It was a botched effort that the state still struggles to overcome. Half of Michigan’s vulnerable seniors are still waiting for their shot, even as the governor announced plans to open up vaccinations to every adult in the state – forcing the elderly to compete with others less at risk to the virus.

When the head of the department Whitmer had in charge of vaccinations disagreed with the governor, he “resigned” and was given $155,000 to sign a legal document preventing him from coming clean with the public.

Throughout the last year, Governor Whitmer has demanded that she go it alone. She’s suspended the rule of law. She’s ignored the science. And she’s left Michigan citizens in the dark. It’s a disastrous approach that has only made things worse… and she has only herself to blame.


Tony Daunt
Executive Director