A group of sheriffs announced they will not enforce some of Democratic Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s executive orders on the same daythousands ralliedagainst state-mandated shelter-in-place orders outside the state Capitol in Lansing.
Sheriffs Mike Borkovich, Ted Schendel, Ken Falk, and Kim Cole of Michigan’s 101st District released a press statement Wednesday afternoon detailing what they said was their decision to place their oath to the Constitution above the Whitmer’s wishes.
“We write today to inform the public for our respective counties of our opposition to some of Governor Whitmer’s executive orders. While we understand her desire to protect the public, we question some restrictions that she has imposed as overstepping her executive authority,” read theletter signedby each sheriff.
Hundreds of thousands signed petitions and joined online groups to voice their frustration with Whitmer’s orders and to organize protests. Whitmer enacted the stay-at-home policy onMarch 22and has been met with criticism from small-business owners and the unemployed.
“People are basically being told what they can and can’t buy at stores,” said Matt Seely, a member of the Michigan Conservative Coalition who rallied outside the state Capitol. “Nothing makes sense. You can buy a bottle of liquor, but you can’t buy a gallon of paint.”
The four sheriffs promised to continue abiding by social distancing guidelines as they attempt to reopen parts of Michigan that have not been affected as badly as the Detroit metro area, where more than20,000 caseshave been reported.
“Our focus needs to be on reopening our counties and getting people back to work. We also need to be aware that this virus is deadly and that we need to continue to practice social distancing, washing of hands, wearing of masks as well as other medically recommended measures.”