There are some people who just can’t read a room even when their lives depend on it.
Such people are always the ones you avoid at parties, the ones who you avoid because they make every situation awkward. Now imagine if someone like that is a governor, and you get the situation in Michigan.
Since day one of the pandemic, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer has made it her God-given mission to make life as miserable for her constituents as possible. Second only to Andrew Cuomo in New York, Whitmer has been the smarmiest, most self-righteous of all Democrat governors.
She’s taken absolute delight in extending some of the most severe lockdown restrictions in the country indefinitely, while seeming to enjoy with downright glee prosecuting Michiganders who tried to reopen their businesses.
Adding insult to injury, Whitmer spent much of 2020 using the pandemic to promote her own political brand, going as far as flying to Delaware to kiss Joe Biden’s ring in a vain attempt to become vice president.
And just like Cuomo, the media fawned over her every move.
Flash forward to the present day, and Whitmer’s list of excuses for continuing Michigan’s lockdowns becomes thinner by the day. Multiple vaccines have become available, while roughly half of the adults in the U.S. have received at least one vaccine shot.
Add to that the fact that as of April 18 all adults aged 16 and above are vaccine eligible, you’d think Whitmer would lay off, right?
You would think that, but just like the annoying guest at the party, Whitmer keeps reading the proverbial room the wrong way. The bad part is the consequences are far more substantial.
According to a new report, the State of Michigan (so really Whitmer) is looking to make COVID-19 restrictions on businesses permanent.
Mask wearing and social distancing would become set fixtures, regardless of a customer’s vaccination status, and businesses would be required to keep a "COVID-19 safety coordinator" on site to keep Her Majesty Gretchen in the loop.
I’m not a psychologist, but I don’t think anyone needs a degree to figure this one out. Here is a governor who, driven by power and media attention, is making a last, desperate grab for power while there’s still time as people wait to get vaccinated.
Whitmer is not the first politician to believe her own headlines, nor will she be the last, but it’s amazing how much the need to micromanage peoples’ lives has pushed her to propose this ridiculous set of proposed "safety" measures.
Whitmer has an addiction, pure and simple. It’s an addiction to power, an addiction to control, an addiction to the flattery heaped on her by the Michigan and national media for just simply existing.
The problem with hype, though, is that eventually you have to back it up with results. If things are going well in Michigan, it’s news to me.
Perhaps if Whitmer could relate to the people being forced to choose between closing down and breaking the law things would be different, but Whitmer has no concept of working an honest job.
If she did, perhaps she could understand why more than 500,000 Michiganders have signed a petition asking to repeal her emergency powers because they’re sick and tired of being told to stay at home while other states have had gradual, sensible reopenings.
If she listened to contrary points of view, instead of her sycophantic media supporters, perhaps she could comprehend why, last fall, the Michigan Supreme Court ruled that her use of a 1945 law to extend the state’s state of emergency was unconstitutional.
Maybe if she actually released the data she claimed all last year she was using as a guide, the rest of us might understand some of Whitmer’s logic. But she hasn’t, because like so many before her, Whitmer feels she doesn’t owe the people who put her in office anything.
She just wants control, and she wants to pretend the pandemic will last forever in order to maintain the facade that she is not a state governor, but the feudal lord of a medieval fiefdom.
It’s petty and unnecessary, but there’s another consequence that the all-knowing Whitmer has failed to see in her shortsightedness.
Like Anthony Fauci’s painfully inconsistent messaging on COVID, Whitmer’s need to make her restrictions permanent means that some Michiganders will now never bother to get the vaccine.
Some people will look at the insistence on mask mandates at their businesses and think "Why bother with a vaccine if I still have to insist my customers must social distance?"
It’s just as bad as Fauci puttering about on cable television and telling viewers they should wear two masks even after getting their shots.
In other words, the only thing that can come out of Whitmer’s obsession with power is a vicious cycle of fighting over COVID restrictions that will feed itself until she’s out of office.
Michigan deserves better than that and Americans on the whole deserve leaders who will treat them like adults instead of coddling them like helicopter parents for the sake of idolized "safety" while grabbing power for themselves.
But like a child, it appears Gov. Whitmer is going to kick and scream to hold onto her toys until an adult finally steps into the room and takes back the steering wheel for one of our greatest states.
Craig Shirley is a Ronald Reagan biographer, presidential historian, and four-time best-selling author. His most recent book is, ''Mary Ball Washington,'' a definitive biography of George Washington’s mother. Read Craig Shirley's Reports — More Here.
© 2021 Newsmax. All rights reserved.