Judge Declines to Pause Order Reopening Gyms, Despite Whitmer Request

A federal judge refused on Monday to pause an order to reopen indoor gyms in Michigan, despite Gov. Gretchen Whiter filing an appeal in a higher court.

U.S. District Court Judge Paul Maloney ruled on Friday that indoor gyms could reopen on June 25. Gyms are not explicitly permitted in the MI Safe Start plan, which denotes when certain industries can reopen in Michigan. Maloney said in his opinion that gyms would be held to the same standard as other workplaces.

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Michigan Gov. Whitmer Requests Major Disaster Declaration from President Trump Over Michigan Floods

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer on Tuesday requested a major disaster declaration from President Trump in response to the flooding in mid-Michigan.

The failure of the Edenville and Sanford dams last month caused catastrophic flooding in Arenac, Gladwin, Iosco, Midland and Saginaw counties. Whitmer previously declared a State of Emergency for the area, as well as requested that the Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy launch an investigation into the cause of the failures.

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Whitmer Seen Not Practicing Social Distancing at Thursday Protest

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer was seen protesting the death of George Floyd on Thursday in Highland Park with hundreds of other people in a way that appeared to break social distancing practices, despite voicing concerns in recent weeks about similar demonstrations spreading coronavirus.

Tiffany Brown, a spokesperson for the governor, denied that Whitmer had violated the executive order issues on Monday. The order, which moved Michigan into phase four of the MI Safe Start plan, says that people should remain six feet apart at public gatherings and that gatherings should consist of 100 people or fewer.

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Whitmer Asks EGLE to Investigate Failure of Midland Dams

Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer sent a letter to the Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes and Energy on Wednesday asking the department to investigate what caused the failure of the Edenville and Sanford dams.

The two dams failed last week after heavy rainfall in mid-Michigan. The resulting flood displaced around 10,000 people across several counties and was so heavy it was classified as a 500-year flood, meaning it is likely to happen only once every 500 years, according to MLive. Whitmer issued an emergency declaration and sent in the National Guard.

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Judge Sides with Whitmer in State of Emergency Extension Fight

A Michigan Court of Claims judge has ruled in the favor of Gov. Gretchen Whitmer, saying that she had the authority to extend Michigan’s state of emergency order.

Judge Cynthia Stephens said that while Whitmer had the authority to extend the order under the Emergency Powers of the Governor Act of 1945, she did overstep by trying to extend it under the Emergency Management Act of 1976, which requires legislative authority, according to reporting by The Detroit News.

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Northern Michigan, Upper Peninsula Allowed To Reopen, Gov. Whitmer Says

Two regions in Michigan will be allowed to reopen retail businesses, office work and restaurants with limited seating, according to an executive order signed by Gov. Gretchen Whitmer on Monday.

The partial reopening, which will take effect on May 22, will allow retail businesses and office work that cannot be done remotely to reopen, as well as restaurants and bars with limited seating. Restaurants and bars will be required to limit capacity to 50 percent of normal seating, keep groups at least six feet from one other and require serves to wear face coverings.

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Michigan Conservative Coalition Submits Open Letter to Lansing Mayor Clarifying It Is Not Associated with New Protests

The Michigan Conservative Coalition recently issued an open letter to Lansing Mayor Andy Schor warning that upcoming protests in Lansing are not associated with the group. The MCC organized the “Operation Gridlock” car rally last week protesting Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s lockdown orders.

The rally drew thousands of cars to Lansing on April 15 to protest Whitmer’s most recent lockdown orders, which restrict travel within the state and the sale of items like gardening or flooring supplies in large stores. The protest also included several people on the lawn of the Capitol, which the MCC said was a different protest that co-opted their own.

“It’s unfortunate that an unrelated group chose to crash our vehicle rally and invite people to protest on the Capitol lawn,” the MCC said in its open letter. “However, those few hundred can’t take away from the tens of thousands who stayed in their vehicles. Our guidelines to participants were modeled after the ‘Stay Safe’ guidelines for social distancing.”

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Whitmer Receives Backlash From Amash, Others Over New Order

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer has received backlash from politicians and citizens alike after she extended and added to the “Stay Home, Stay Safe order” that requires Michigan residents to stay at home.

Whitmer extended the order to the end of April. In addition to banning “nonessential” businesses and asking residents to stay at home, the new order also places restrictions on stores, blocks the sale of certain items and prohibits travel between two residences in the state.

The order restricts stores that are more than 50,000 square feet from selling items related to carpet or flooring, furniture and paint, as well as garden centers. It also bans travels between two Michigan residences except for activities that are considered essential, such as caring for a family member or to fulfill custody agreements.

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Whitmer Orders ‘Stay Home, Stay Safe’ Lockdown for Three Weeks

Michigan residents have been ordered to stay inside their homes as part of a “Stay Home, Stay Safe” executive order, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer announced on Monday.

The order, effective at 12:01 a.m. on March 24, prohibits people leaving their home unless they are engaged in an outdoor activity, performing necessary tasks like going to a hospital or grocery store, or are part of an industry deemed essential. The lockdown will be in place for three weeks.

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