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Fed-up Michiganders protest outside Gov. Whitmer’s home, state legislature moves to curtail her power

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With Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer basking in the limelight as a potential vice presidential selection by Joe Biden, the Democrat Party’s presumptive presidential nominee, residents in Michigan are growing weary of her authoritarian ways.

On the same day it was being reported that Whitmer plans to extend the coronavirus stay-at-home order in the state for two more weeks until May 15, Michiganders staged a protest outside the Democrats’ home.

Ingenious protesters dubbed the drive-by demonstration, “Operation Queen’s Castle,” according to FOX 2 Detroit.

“We wanted to send Gretchen Whitmer a message, we didn’t want to surrender our liberties just for a little temporary safety,” organizer Brian Pannebecker told the Fox affiliate.

The protesters want people who can work without putting others in danger to be able to go back to earning a paycheck, instead of being forced to depend on handouts from the government — spotty as that is.

“Younger people, healthy people, without putting anybody else in danger, including ourselves, and others in danger, should be able to go back to work,” Pannebecker said.

This week’s protest followed a large turnout last week in the capital city of Lansing, which was appropriately called, “Operation Gridlock.”

As Fox 2 reported, thousands of people drove into Lansing, surrounding the Capitol Building as “a symbolic gesture of disagreement with Gretchen Whitmer’s Stay Safe, Stay Home directive.”

Whitmer has gone further than most states in response to the pandemic, dictating to retailers what can and cannot be sold.

In an executive order signed earlier this month, retailers were required to stop selling “non-essential” items and rope off areas like paint and garden centers. Whitmer also banned the visiting of family and friends.

“If you’re not buying food or medicine or other essential items, you should not be going to the store,” Whitmer said.

In what was described as an “extraordinary move,” the Detroit Free Press reported that the GOP-controlled Michigan Legislature scheduled a special session for Friday to create an oversight committee to examine how Whitmer has responded to the crisis as well as consider bills that would strip the governor of some of her powers.

“The House & Senate will convene tomorrow to create a special oversight committee on COVID-19 to examine our government’s response. Michigan needs to handle this pandemic seriously yet properly. It’s what the people deserve, and we will see that it happens,” Republican Speaker of the House Lee Chatfield said in a tweet.

Gov. Whitmer has threatened to veto any legislation limiting her executive power.

As for the VP talk, a glowing Whitmer said all the right things when asked about it during an appearance on Democrat-friendly CNN.

“The job that I want is the one that I have,” the governor declared. “I worked for two years to become the governor of the state of Michigan, and while it’s been challenging and there have been some tough days, there’s no place I’d rather be than right here in my home state, making decisions that are saving people’s lives. It’s the honor of my lifetime to be here.”

Tom Tillison

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