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The Time to Roll Back Their Powers is Now

As Gretchen Whitmer is once again caught violating her own lockdown rules, the imperative for voters and legislatures should be clear.

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer waves to the crowd before Democratic U.S. Vice Presidential nominee Sen. Kamala Harris (D-CA) during a voter mobilization event on September 22, 2020 in Detroit, Michigan. (Photo by Elaine Cromie/Getty Images)

I’m just in awe at this point:

Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer (D) hit the bar this weekend and violated her own coronavirus orders, according to a photo Breitbart News has exclusively obtained.

Whitmer and a large group of friends, including her appointed chief operations officer, Tricia Foster, visited the Landshark in East Lansing, violating her restaurant orders in the process, according to a photo one of the attendees posted on Facebook.

The photo, posted Saturday, was part of a montage. Shortly after, Whitmer’s friend deleted the collage and reposted it sans the governor and one of her top aides.

So to review, Whitmer instituted one of the harshest and most capricious lockdowns in the country, usurped power from the legislature after they tried to intervene, her glorious husband got caught trying to leverage his position to get his boat put out on the water in violation of COVID rules, she then violated the rules herself by marching socially undistanced at a Black Lives Matter rally, she trampled her own travel advisories by taking a trip to Florida to see her sick father, her top aide was revealed to have also gone to Florida, her health director found time to venture to Alabama, it came out that Whitmer had fishily dipped into her transition fund to pay for multiple flights on private planes…and now, just for good measure, she’s gone and pulled a Gavin Newsom.

I’m from a northeastern state responsible for plenty of corruption and I’ve never seen anything like this. The woman is putting on a clinic in how power corrupts and the ruling class can’t be trusted. She’s like a supervillain in some libertarian graphic novel.

Now across the map to Pennsylvania:

Pennsylvania voters have approved two ballot questions that would curtail the governor’s emergency powers, a victory for Republican lawmakers in what was widely seen as a referendum on the Wolf administration’s response to the coronavirus pandemic.

Unofficial results show 54% of voters backed amending the state constitution to allow a simple majority of lawmakers to terminate a disaster declaration at any time. Currently, such a declaration can only be ended with the governor’s consent or with support from two-thirds of the General Assembly.

Much has been made recently about “learning the lessons of COVID.” One of those lessons is surely: don’t give governors untrammeled and unexpiring emergency powers. As the pandemic finally comes to a close, it’s time for more democratic and legislative pushback like this.

about the author

Matt Purple is a senior editor at The American Conservative.

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