Hundreds of protesters descended on the Michigan State Capitol on Wednesday to protest the governor’s stay-at-home order.
Michigan has been among the states hardest hit by the coronavirus, reporting more than 27,000 cases and more than 1,900 deaths. Gov. Gretchen Whitmer, who has drawn President Trump’s ire, issued an order shuttering nonessential businesses and barring travel between homes.
On Wednesday, a protest organized in part by the Betsy DeVos family-linked group the Michigan Freedom Fund sought to pressure the governor to change course, NBC News reports.
Many protesters stayed in their car as part of “Project Gridlock,” intending to clog up the streets, while others marched on the capitol’s steps.
The protesters chanted “lock her up” and “recall Whitmer.”
Whitmer says protesters blocked ambulance:
Whitmer told MSNBC that the protesters blocked “one of our hospitals.”
“An ambulance literally wasn’t able to get into the bay for ten minutes, she said.
"It was essentially a political rally, a political statement that flies in the face of all of the science and all of the best practices from the stay-at-home order that was issued," she said.
"We know that this demonstration is going to come at a cost to people's health. The sad irony of the protest is that they don't like to be in this stay-at-home order, but they might have just created a need to lengthen it,” she added at her news briefing.
Others states too:
Protesters also came out in Ohio, Kentucky, and North Carolina, USA Today reports.
All of the protests were aimed at pressuring state officials to lift business restrictions.
"Some people want to completely obliterate these restrictions," said North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper. "It would be a catastrophe. The numbers are very clear that the interventions that we've entered into — social gatherings, limitations on bars and restaurants, the stay at home order — those kinds of things are working."
Another protest is planned to take place in Virginia on Thursday.