In the wake of Thursday's raucous protest in Lansing against Governor Gretchen Whitmer's Stay Home order, Republican state Senator, and Majority Leader, Mike Shirkey said people who used threats to stir up fear not only do they not represent the cause of protesters, they are "a bunch of jackasses".
Sen. Shirkey released a statement on his twitter account on Friday, at the same time Gov. Whitmer was talking about the state's efforts to fight COVID-19. Shirkey condemned Thursday protestors and said they hurt the cause of protestors.
"Yesterday, we saw a great number of citizens protest the actions of their government. Many protested safely and responsibly and I respect and appreciate their efforts. Several other so-called protestors, used intimidation and the threat of physical harm to stir up fear and feed rancor. I condemn their behavior and denounce their tactics. Their actions hurt their cause and steal from the rights of others by creating an environment where responsible citizens do not feel safe enough to express themselves. They do not represent the Senate Republicans. At best, those so-called protestors are a bunch of jackasses."
TOPSHOT - Protestors try to enter the Michigan House of Representative chamber and are being kept out by the Michigan State Police after the American Patriot Rally organized by Michigan United for Liberty protest for the reopening of businesses on th
Thursday's protest was the second wave of critics in Lansing to protest decisions by the Michigan Governor to restrict business and travel in the state.
Gov. Whitmer discussed the protesters on Friday during her speech from Lansing, saying the scene was 'disturbing' and said "swastikas and confederate flags, nooses and automatic rifles do not represent who we are as Michiganders."
Also during her press conference on Friday, Whitmer addressed the reopening of construction work and set 'best practices' that construction sites have to follow in order to reopen on May 7.
In videos and pictures, armed men and women were inside the Capitol where state Senators and Representatives were discussing the extension of the state of emergency. Eventually, Michigan lawmakers opted not to support the extension but Gov. Whitmer issued an extension anyway.
TOPSHOT - A protestor with a sign that has Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whittmer depicted as Adolph Hitler is seen at an American Patriot Rally organized by Michigan United for Liberty protest for the reopening of businesses, on the steps of the Michigan S
Her new orders are effective through May 28 extending the state of emergency which remains in effect under the Emergency Powers of the Governor Act of 1945; and an extension of the state of emergency and a state of disaster under the Emergency Management Act of 1976.
“COVID-19 is an enemy that has taken the lives of more Michiganders than we lost during the Vietnam War,” Whitmer said in a release. “While some members of the legislature might believe this crisis is over, common sense and all of the scientific data tells us we’re not out of the woods yet. By refusing to extend the emergency and disaster declaration, Republican lawmakers are putting their heads in the sand and putting more lives and livelihoods at risk. I’m not going to let that happen.”
Demonstrators, waving a Confederate States flag (2nd L), take part in an "American Patriot Rally," organized on April 30, 2020, by Michigan United for Liberty on the steps of the Michigan State Capitol in Lansing, demanding the reopening of businesse