Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer has enacted some of the most restrictive COVID-19 rules in the country, but now she’s being accused of acting like they don’t apply to her.
On May 18, Whitmer announced that some lockdown restrictions would be lifted before Memorial Day weekend, allowing state residents to visit parks and lakes once again. But Whitmer warned: “If you don’t live in these regions … think long and hard before you take a trip into them.”
“A small spike could put the hospital system in dire straits pretty quickly. That’s precisely why we’re asking everyone to continue doing their part. Don’t descend on [waterfront] Traverse City from all regions of the state,” the Democratic governor said.
Three days later, a marina owner wrote a Facebook post that claimed Whitmer’s husband, Marc Mallory, had called to ask if the marina could put their boat into the water before Memorial Day, the Detroit News reported Monday.
No longer visible to the public, Facebook posts from NorthShore Dock LLC and its owner, Tad Dowker, focused on what Dowker said was a request last week by Whitmer’s husband, Marc Mallory. The posts have drawn the attention of Republican state lawmakers, who said the Democratic governor’s family may not be following her guidance for the rest of the state.
In the Facebook post, Dowker wrote: “This morning, I was out working when the office called me, there was a gentleman on hold who wanted his boat in the water before the weekend. Being Memorial weekend and the fact that we started working three weeks late means there is no chance this is going to happen.”
“Well our office personnel had explained this to the man and he replied, ‘I am the husband to the governor, will this make a difference?'” wrote Dowker.
Whitmer and her husband, who live in the governor’s mansion in Lansing, also own a property in Elks Rapid, a three-hour drive from the state capital and not far from Traverse City.
Whitmer’s spokeswoman, Tiffany Brown, on Monday “didn’t confirm or deny” the claims, Detroit News reported. “Our practice is not to discuss the governor’s or her family’s personal calendar/schedules. And we’re not going to make it a practice of addressing every rumor that is spread online,” Brown said.
“There’s been a lot of wild misinformation spreading online attacking the governor and her family, and the threats of violence against her personally are downright dangerous,” she added.
Republican state Sen. Tom Barrett of Charlotte told Detroit News that while Whitmer urged state residents not to flock to Traverse City, and “Yet, what did her family try and do?”
“In the Army, we have a tradition that the leaders get in line for chow last behind everyone else in the unit,” he said. “Here is the leader of our state. … Her family is trying to cut people in line.”
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