UP less safe due to GOP’s efforts


An open letter to the Michigan GOP — State Rep. Beau Matthew LaFave, state Sen. Ed McBroom, state Rep. Lee Chatfield, U.S. Rep. Jack Bergman and state Sen. Mike Shirkey —

Sixty percent of the Upper Peninsula’s ICU beds are full as of Sunday.

You worked hard to strip Gov. Gretchen Whitmer of her emergency powers that were keeping us safe. In fact, the state Department of Health and Human Services had to step in immediately with safety measures to replace what was stripped.

You’ve put forth no plan to mitigate COVID-19 in the Upper Peninsula. A response from Sen. Ed McBroom’ office referred me to the MDHHS steps being taken.

TV6 and FOX UP reported 51 new cases on Friday in Dickinson County alone.

Michigan Republican Party leaders are calling for mask wearing to be a “personal choice” while our cases rise. We are not even into flu season yet.

Small businesses can’t be open without safety measures.

Schools can’t be open without safety measures.

Frontline workers are not protected without safety measures.

Your own staff are working from home to be safe. GOP legislators have incredible taxpayer-funded health care but are fighting to strip ours away.

Was it worth it? Was working against the governor since March instead of for our safety worth it? Was stoking the right-wing base into hateful vitriol and their violent plotting against her worth it?

You had the power in your words, and the examples you set, to bring Michigan together … safely. But you didn’t. You continue to demonize her.

Were the lives lost worth it? The ones that will be lost this winter?

Does representing only a fraction of your constituents instead of all of us … does that mean your paycheck will only be a fraction?

Do you realize that toeing Trump’s line has caused the most divided, most chaotic and most anguished Michigan population in our history?

Tina Pirlot

Iron Mountain


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