Gov. Whitmer Could Be Facing Cuomo-Type Trouble Over Nursing Home Debacle

AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster, File

Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer could be facing scrutiny over her handling of the COVID-19 pandemic, as it relates to elderly residents in nursing homes. Like New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo, she made decisions that could come back to haunt her in the not-so-distant future.

Fox News reported:

The state of Michigan is facing a lawsuit whose plaintiffs are seeking information on Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s coronavirus-related executive order regarding the state’s nursing home residents.

Whitmer could soon find herself under scrutiny similar to that faced by a fellow Democrat, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo, the Michigan men taking the legal action against Whitmer say.

In an article published in USA Today, plaintiffs Steve Delie and Charlie LeDuff laid out the details of their lawsuit against the governor, decrying the fact that she has been less than transparent regarding her executive order about nursing homes.

“It shouldn’t take a lawsuit to obtain this critical data,” they wrote. “Gov. Whitmer made the same policy choice as Gov. Cuomo, forcing contagious senior citizens into close proximity with other medically vulnerable people. In fact, her policy, a similar version of which is still in effect today, went even farther, forcing some non-senior patients into nursing homes, including a 20-year-old. Michigan citizens deserve to know why she did this, and whether our governor is telling the truth about the consequences.”

The lawsuit seeks to compel Whitmer’s office to disclose information about her handling of the matter. The plaintiffs referenced the revelation that Cuomo’s administration deliberately underreported the number of COVID deaths in New York nursing homes to avoid political scrutiny. They argued that New Yorkers and Michigan residents deserve to know the truth about the decisions.

However, Gov. Whitmer is legally exempt from Freedom of Information laws, according to the lawsuit. “Thanks to this exemption, the governor [Whitmer] has no obligation to produce any records whatsoever, despite making decisions affecting the lives of every Michigander,” the authors noted.

Delie and LeDuff are accusing Whitmer of using the exemption as cover to “act with impunity” and is not required to provide the data on which she based her decisions regarding the coronavirus pandemic.

They allege that Whitmer has used the shielding provided by the exemption to “act with impunity” – and was not required to provide the data on which she based her coronavirus policy decisions.

Earlier in March, as RedState’s Thomas LaDuke wrote, Michigan Attorney General Danna Nessel refused a request by state Republican lawmakers to look into the governor’s decisions related to nursing homes.

“I appreciate that you and your colleagues have policy disagreements with Gov. Whitmer’s response to COVID-19,” Nessel wrote in a letter responding to the request. “But an investigation by my office is not the mechanism to resolve those disagreements.”

Republicans castigated Whitmer for allowing nursing home residents who had been infected with the virus to return to their homes. They claim the move put other residents at risk, as it did in New York, where Gov. Cuomo is facing an FBI investigation and is under the scrutiny of federal prosecutors.

Democrats and the activist media have been trying to distract the public from decisions related to COVID-19 patients and nursing homes, especially when it concerns Cuomo, who is also under fire for allegedly sexually harassing female colleagues. However, it appears they will not be able to keep this one under wraps.

While the governor might have an exemption that allows her to conceal her actions, there are likely other ways to ascertain how her executive orders placed people in peril. At this point, it is clear this issue isn’t going away anytime soon.