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Admiral Mike Franken, candidate for U.S. Senate, reacts to Governor Reynolds decision to further open Iowa 

Admiral Mike Franken

DES MOINES – On Wednesday, Governor Kim Reynolds announced that she is lifting further restrictions across Iowa.

The Des Moines Register reported:

“Gov. Kim Reynolds announced Wednesday that she is lifting mandated closures of barbershops, salons and massage therapy businesses statewide starting Friday. Reynolds also announced that restrictions that are currently lifted on establishments like restaurant dining areas, libraries, race tracks and fitness centers in 77 of Iowa’s counties will be lifted statewide Friday” (Nick Coltrain and Ian Richardson).

“Let’s hope Governor Reynolds’ decision doesn’t turn into a body count,” U.S. Senate candidate Admiral Michael Franken said. “I questioned the timing two weeks ago when the governor was premature in opening up 77 counties. Doubling down on that order is similarly unwise.”

Franken, who was involved in mitigating the Ebola outbreak in Africa, and also worked disaster response following Hurricanes Katrina and Hugo, continued:

“I’ve urged Governor Reynolds to listen to the experts from the beginning. The CDC consistently urges against decisions like these. Iowa public health experts also urge against decisions like these. We should not be putting Iowans in danger.

I understand the desire to open businesses. We will be served by flattening the curve now and ensuring pervasive testing gives insight into when to open. This is especially true in close-contact institutions like barbershops.

We have to be especially careful of meatpacking plants. The nation’s food supply has its roots in Iowa. We have a responsibility to not sacrifice long-term viability of this nation’s food supply for short sighted political considerations.

The bottom line is, those terrible outbreaks in Sioux City, Des Moines, and Waterloo-Cedar Falls will be catastrophic when they spread to rural areas.

Franken emphasized that Reynold should listen to the experts. “I don’t know who the governor is listening to. But I worry she’s putting party politics over public health and Iowans. We need better leadership.

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