Letter: Bennett’s Capital Comments column confusing

Published 8:30 pm Friday, April 24, 2020

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As I read Rep. Peggy Bennett’s April 18 Capital Comments, the comments seemed reasonable, but I was left in a state of confusion. The news I have been following indicates the Legislature has begun debating many of the issues listed in the comments. There has been agreement on off-sale alcohol sales for restaurants and golf courses and other outdoor recreational areas are being opened. These are examples of responsible safe openings in our state. I hope both parties review the issues in a serious manner and refrain from the antics of some of the Republican legislators. We have people dying from COVID-19 in Minnesota, and our citizens need to be protected while also reopening the economy.

The troubling part of Rep. Bennett’s Capitol Comments is that the debate at the Legislature seems to have the Republican Legislators parroting President Trump’s partisan attacks on Democratic governors who are successfully fighting Covid-19 and saving lives. Trump’s bizarre tweets “LIBERATE MINNESOTA,” “LIBERATE MICHIGAN” and ‘‘LIBERATE VIRGINIA” targeting successful efforts by Democratic governors to save lives is truly shameful. Trump’s reference to the Second Amendment is even more troubling. To use a pandemic with people suffering and dying for partisan advantage is despicable. The only explanation that makes sense is that these attacks are trying to deflect attention from his administration’s incompetence in being prepared for any crisis and mismanaging the fight against COVID-19. I call on Republican legislators to find the courage to repudiate Trump’s attack.

We have COVID-19 hotspots developing in our area: Sioux Falls, South Dakota; Worthington; and Waterloo, Iowa. COVID-19 continues to be a threat and can explode. Hopefully these outbreaks can be contained so the suffering and loss of life is minimized.

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I hope the Legislature can debate these issues in a civil manner. I also hope the protesters unleashed by Trump practice social distancing and wear protective equipment so they don’t spread COVID-19 among themselves and the rest of Minnesota.

Joe Pacovsky