Politics

Jen Psaki Defends Gretchen Whitmer Despite COVID Surge In Michigan – ‘She’s Done A Tremendous Job’

Earlier this week, we reported that Michigan’s Democratic Governor Gretchen Whitmer had admitted that there is currently a surge of COVID-19 cases in her state despite the fact that she has enacted some of the strictest coronavirus restrictions in the country. Despite this, White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki spoke out to defend and deny that there was a “vaccine surge” on Wednesday.

During her daily press briefing, Psaki claimed that Whitmer has been “steadfast in her commitment to keeping the people of Michigan safe,” seemingly ignoring the fact that Michigan is experiencing the highest surge of cases of any state in the country.

“If you go back more than a year ago, she led that fight to make sure first responders in the state had PPE [Personal Protective Equipment] they needed when cases took off,” Psaki continued, going on to claim that Whitmer fought for more COVID-19 testing even “when the federal government told governors that they were frankly on their own.”

“She has had to endure not just a public health crisis and a hostile state legislature, but friends who have passed from the virus, armed aggression in the state Capitol and threats against her life. She’s also had to coordinate a disaster response to a faulty dam burst, all while doing all of this, in a devastated Michigan community,” Psaki said, according to The Hill. “So we feel she’s shown some serious grit, fight and resolve. We’re going to continue to work with her on how we can help address the uptick in her state and help deploy the resources we have available.”

This came days after Whitmer admitted that there has been a surge of coronavirus cases in Michigan, although she tried to downplay it being her fault.

“We kept our spread low for a long period of time, so we’ve got reservoirs of people that don’t have antibodies. We have variants, big presence of variants here in Michigan that are easier to catch. And people are tired and they’re moving around more,” Whitmer said on Sunday.

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“We are seeing a surge in Michigan despite the fact that we have some of the strongest policies in place, mask mandates, capacity limits, working from home. We’ve asked our state for a two-week pause. So despite all of that, we are seeing a surge because of these variants,” Whitmer later added. “That’s precisely why we’re really encouraging [the Biden administration] to think about surging vaccines into the state of Michigan.”

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