St. Paul – Today, Governor Tim Walz announced new steps to address the COVID-19 pandemic. These measures include further restrictions and curfews on public and private gatherings, and on bars and restaurants. Rep. Jeremy Munson (Republican-Lake Crystal) offered his reaction.
“From the beginning, Governor Walz’s models and projections for this pandemic were way off,” said Representative Munson. “The Governor’s lockdown earlier this year was an economic and social disaster. The Governor’s policies are nothing more than abject failure after abject failure, delaying the spread until the Fall when hospitals are busy with regular seasonal increases in other illnesses. These latest measures are just another attempt to assert his control over everyone. When will he realize he is doing more harm than good?”
Specifically, the new COVID-19 rules require all bars and restaurants in Minnesota to be closed by 10p.m. for in-person service. The capacity for bars and restaurants will be limited to 50% with a 150 person cap. There will no longer be any counter service, all patrons must now be seated, and all bar games will be closed.
Additionally, all receptions for weddings and funerals must end by 10pm and will be limited to 50 individuals on November 27th and further limited to 25 people after December 11th. Finally, all private social gatherings are now limited to 10 people, no matter if they are indoors or outdoors, and restricted to 3 households or less.
“We have not been given any empirical data showing these types of restrictions even help. In fact, the Minnesota License Beverage Association has told us bars and restaurants are only affiliated with 2% of all cases. These punitive and arbitrary restrictions will destroy the livelihoods of thousands of Minnesotans and cause many businesses to permanently close. Unlike the Governor, I trust the people of Minnesota to be smart and act responsibly.” said Rep. Munson.
“The Governor has consistently dismissed our state constitution,” Rep. Munson continued. “As legislators, we are not asking simply for ‘input’ on his decisions. Instead, we demand that Governor Walz follow the constitutional process of going through the legislature to enact policy changes. We have three co- equal branches of government. The legislature is the voice of the people which creates and writes the laws. However, Governor Walz does not seem to care that he is ignoring the legislature and shredding the constitution.”
Rep. Munson has consistently voted to end the Governor’s peacetime emergency powers and eliminate his executive orders.