Governor Tim Walz sees his dear state of Minnesota catching up with its unhealthy Dakota neighbors in coronavirus, and he’s doing something about it:
“This is painful, it’s no fun, I’m as frustrated as you are,” said Gov. Walz. “We should’ve broken the back of this thing months ago in this country.”
Under the restrictions, bars and restaurants are required to end dine-in services between 10 p.m. and 4 a.m. Indoor capacity will also be capped at 150 people. Bar seating will also be closed, with the exception of establishments that only have bar seating.
In regards to gatherings, there is a 10-person limit for indoor and outdoor gatherings, and all social gatherings must be limited to members of three households or less.
For events like weddings and funerals, an instituted phased approach with be put in place. However, eventually, a 25-person cap will be put in place. Reception events may also not take place between 10 p.m. and 4 a.m.
“If we don’t make these changes, if we don’t change our behavior we will have 10,000 cases, we will have 1,500 people in the hospital and we will be reporting, God forbid, 50 or more deaths a day,” said Walz.
According to Walz, 71 percent of coronavirus infections in the state have occurred during private gatherings, at bars and restaurants and during weddings and funerals [Callan Gray, “Walz Announces New Covid-19 Restrictions for Gatherings, Puts Bar and Restaurant Curfew in Place,” KSTP, 2020.11.10].
Did you catch that? 71% of infections are coming from social gatherings—i.e., unnecessary, avoidable events. Skip the bar, skip the restaurant, put off that big reception, and you could knock your state’s coronavirus caseload down by more than two thirds.
Governor Walz wishes his neighbors would get their act together and make hard choices like he’s making to protect friends and neighbors:
Minnesota Gov. Tim Walz said he wishes the neighboring Dakotas would take more aggressive steps to slow the spread of the coronavirus, singling out South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem for criticism.
Walz made the comments Tuesday during a news conference in St. Paul where he announced new restrictions on bars, restaurants and gatherings in Minnesota. He lamented that Minnesota is catching up with the Dakotas, which lead the country in new cases per capita.
The Democratic governor said he’s not blaming neighboring states for that, but he said this summer’s Sturgis Motorcycle Rally in South Dakota was “absolutely unnecessary,” and that data shows it helped spread the virus beyond that state. Singling out Noem, who is a Republican, he said he wishes the state would have canceled the rally and imposed a statewide mask mandate, as Minnesota has.
“And this one’s a little bit personal because the governor of South Dakota has taken to traveling to other states and criticizing others — now at a time when that state’s hospital capacity is overwhelmed,” Walz said [Steve Karnowski, “Minnesota Gov. Tim Walz Criticizes South Dakota Counterpart Kristi Noem over Coronavirus,” AP via Minneapolis Star Tribune, 2020.11.11].
I get the distinct feeling that Governor Walz might give more of a darn about my family’s life than my own Governor does. Sigh.