Friday, July 31, 2020

Wisconsin Gets A Face Mask Order, Republicans Have Meltdowns

In May 2020, the Wisconsin Supreme Kangaroo Court ruled in favor of the COVID 19 pandemic and immediately put an end to Governor Tony Evers stay at home order. 

Predictably, people went nuts, threw personal safety and personal responsibility out the window and commenced to party like mad and go on vacations, usually to the scenic areas of Northern Wisconsin. 
 Also predictably, the number of new cases of COVID 19 began to climb at an every accelerating rate. When the Supreme Court issued their decision, new cases were averaging about 100-125 cases per day. On Thursday, Wisconsin saw it's first day of over 1000 new cases. 

Despite the pandemic growing further and further out of control, even in the most rural counties, the Republicans did nothing but campaign and sit with their thumbs up their asses. 

Finally, on Thursday, as Wisconsin hit its first 1,000+ new cases in one day, Evers took action and issued a health emergency declaration and a mandatory face mask executive order. Suprisingly, many businesses, especially bankers, supported this measure. And just to help keep the Republicans on their heels, Evers went on the offensive:
But Democratic lawmakers and Wisconsin bankers praised the order, saying it will help reverse a worsening outbreak in the state and provide uniform rules for businesses operating in different counties. 
Evers said he decided to issue the orders as a way to get on top of a virus outbreak growing out of control in recent weeks. 
"We tried their way. Folks, it’s not working," Evers said Thursday of Republican lawmakers' successful lawsuit to remove state-imposed restrictions on daily life.
I'm sure that the timing of Evers' order was not accidental. The order goes into effect Saturday, August 1. That's the same day that Jill Karofsky takes her seat on the Supreme Court, narrowing the right wing majority to 4-3. But if Justice Brian Hagendorn had sided with Evers on the stay at home order. If he stays consistent, that would give Evers a 4-3 decision in his favor. 

Adding to this complex 3D chess game is that any court challenges are likely to be unsuccessful since the state Republicans also tightened their power grab by passing a law stating that they could dismiss and executive order with a majority in both houses of the state legislature, which they currently have. 

As the gentle reader probably guessed, the Republicans started having conniptions and hissy fits over the order. As much fun as that was too watch, their reasoning for these temper tantrums was purely a laugh riot. 

My personal favorite is the ones claiming that it's an infringement of their rights. Yet these same people don't have an issue following similar expectations such as wearing clothes, using seat belts or other common sense safety measures. 

Some are arguing that the few local governments that have passed their own face mask laws are sufficient. But doing face mask laws in this piecemeal way is absolutely useless. It's like saying that it's OK to pee in certain parts of a swimming pool but not in others. 

Others are only upset that it doesn't follow their laws on how such orders should be issued, revealing that they are more concerned about politics and getting into power struggles than saving people's lives. 

One such fool is State Senator Steve Nass, who is well-named since he truly is An Ass. Nass is calling for a special session to end the order, despite the fact that the Republicans had more than 100 days to get off their asses and actually take care of business before now. Making an even bigger ass out of himself is the twisted logic he used in calling for this special session and projecting his party's failures on Evers:
Sen. Steve Nass (R-Whitewater) called on Speaker Robin Vos and Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald to immediately call the Legislature back into session to pass a joint resolution ending Evers’ emergency declaration. 
"Governor Evers actions today are nothing more than a political stunt to create a partisan fight with the Legislature," Nass said in a statement. "This is not about improving public health. Today’s emergency declaration is all about the November election and the weak performance of Democrats in this state."
While the state senate majority leader, Scott Fitzgerald, had expressed that he is considering calling a special session, it is questionable at best whether it would go anywhere. 

Being a little more political savvy than usual, Speaker of the Assembly Robin Vos is trying to distance himself from taking such an action:
Assembly Speaker Robin Vos, R-Rochester, said there are constitutional questions about Evers' new public health emergency and mask order but signaled he would not be suing the governor over them. 
"I understand the necessity of doing all that we can to control the spread of COVID-19. We all know it’s serious," Vos said in a statement. "Local governments have been responding appropriately and increasing precautionary measures as needed. But Wisconsin shouldn’t have a one-size-fits-all mandate." 
Vos said a statewide mandate "doesn’t build public support when there are questions surrounding the metrics and the constitutionality of this mandate." 
He said legal challenges from "citizen groups" are likely coming.
Vos probably recognizes the fact that taking such an action just three months before the elections would probably cause a major backlash and be political suicide for the Republicans. And since he wants to be governor, Vos wants to be a bit more careful as that in the 2018 elections, all the state wide seats went to the Democrats. Fitzgerald and the other senators feel much more safe in their gerrymandered districts than Vos would be. 

Just as the Republicans ceded their self-proclaimed title of being the party of law and order and the family party, they are surrendering their false claim of being the pro-life party.

1 comment:

  1. Evers bowed to pressure. Good.
    I am concerned about those don't wear masks and get harassed in-person by those who do. This is a very dangerous situation. Here is the URL to comments at Gov's and my comment to Evers: "You need to issue a public statement fast that it is not, NOT, the right of citizens to accost and harass other citizens regarding wearing masks. Folks get very upset about another challenging or harassing them for not wearing masks. As it stands, you have created a situation, absent a statement, in which those who like to harass and bully are empowered by the order, a situation that can easily lead to tragedy on a hot Summer day. Dane County was explicit against citizens harassing other citizens and you should do same."