Minnesota Report

As Donald J Trump (R) continues to discuss his preparation and planning, combined with his pressure to open up the United States for business again on May 1st, he does so in a potential conflict with the state’s governors. Here in Minnesota, he will find a past social studies teacher and National Guard Master Sergeant in Governor Tim Walz (DFL-MN), who is set to disobey the Commander-in-Chief and willing to put Private Bone Spurs right in his place.

Walz has extended his Stay-at-Home Order from May 4th, now to May 13th based on his reading of the science. We have our own model for determination on how  the COVID-19 Virus is being tackled in our state, Minnesota’s model was constructed by a partnership between the state’s Department of Health and the University of Minnesota School of Public Health and has different projections from the University of Washington Corona Virus Model, which has made their code publicly available as has the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation. In this case the Minnesota Model is more specialized to our situation.

The Cavalier attitude Trump casts about in the exercise of the powers of the Presidency will likely find his Waterloo in this instance. While he tries to save his Presidency from ruin in a medical emergency of Biblical proportions Trump/Pharaoh may need to face his own plague and the shallowness of his character being the ultimate result.

The Trump Attitude is becoming a toxic tonic which is affecting other Republicans like Senate Majority Leader Paul Gazelka (R-09, Nisswa). He has started to chafe under the unilateral dictates of Walz’s Executive Orders, but recognizes the political reality of the need for joint agreement by both legislative bodies to overturn any such order, as highly unlikely. He released the following statement yesterday, “Senate Republicans recognize the governor’s authority to extend the peacetime emergency another 30 days to May 13, 2020. We also recognize terminating the emergency would require an affirmative vote from both the House and Senate. Our hope is Governor Walz will soon lay out his plan to reopen Minnesota’s schools, churches, businesses, and activities after May 4, 2020. He clearly understands the healthcare emergency caused by the COVID-19 virus. We need to be assured he also understands the economic emergency caused by his response.”

In this case we all are in one boat and we need to be rowing in the same direction. Even if businesses are opened it doesn’t mean consumer confidence will follow and things will snap back to normal. Until the is a vaccine, people will not choose to gather in large groups, the flow of business at bars and restaurants will slowly rise once there is a viable method to assure people are not carriers of the virus even though they appear to be healthy. There needs to be a system in place to guarantee public health and we will argue one with redundancy, meaning more than one method of creating the assurances.

Minnesota prides itself as the Health Care State, we have taken to calling the corridor from the Twin Cities to Rochester, down Highways 55/52, Medical Alley. We are home to the University of MN Hospital system, the Mayo Clinic arguably the best facility of its kind, only in a disputable argument with the Cleveland Clinic, 3M, Medtronic, the home to HMO’s the likes of Blue Cross and Blue Shield, HealthPartners, Group Health, Medica, and UCARE. The University of MN has the Masonic Cancer Center and the Masonic Children’s Hospital; there is the Gillette’s Children’s Hospital, the Shriner’s Hospital for Children and other facilities which have specialized treatment capabilities. We have seen the development of specialty clinics like Summit Orthopedics and Twin City Orthopedics.

Face it, if Minnesota utilizes it collective resources, and sets a standard like the Minnesota Model, we will prove our worth and make the United States and the World, a safer place for responding to pandemics. Already our incident rate and resulting deaths for states with a large metropolitan area shows a vast difference. We only need look to the east and see the numbers compared to Wisconsin.