Gov. Doug Ducey

Gov. Doug Ducey said he wears a mask when he goes shopping and encourages all residents to wear them in public. Maricopa County officials separately have urged masking whenever people leave their homes.

Gov. Doug Ducey said last week he does not intend to impose new restrictions on Arizonans or require wear masks despite more people contracting COVID-19.

Ducey’s press briefing last Thursday came as three Chandler restaurants and several in Phoenix announced temporary closures because some of their employees contracted the virus.

The Chandler restaurants included Hash Kitchen, Floridino’s Pizza and SanTan Brewing Company.

Floridino’s issued a statement saying that the employee who tested positive had not had any customer contact.

SanTan Brewing Company reopened Sunday, saying it had “thoroughly sanitized” its Chandler and Phoenix locations after two employees tested positive.

Ducey said at his press briefing, “We’re seeing increasing cases” – a statement underscored by the state Department of Health Services showing a record 3,726 patients in Arizona hospitals – 10 percent of the 35,691 confirmed cases in the state,

The day after his press briefing, the department reported a record 1,654 new cases. So far there have been 1,186 deaths.

The governor rebuffed a question of whether he would consider re-imposing some of the restrictions he first put in place in March, stating, “It’s not under discussion.’’

“We’re going to continue our gradual and phased-in reopening,’’ the governor said. “We will balance public health with public safety.’’

State Health Director Cara Christ put a finer point on it, saying the measures that had previously been imposed were designed to ensure that Arizona had enough hospital capacity to deal with an outbreak.

And now?

“We know that it’s in the community,’’ she said.

“We are not going to be able to stop the spread,’’ Christ continued. “And so, we can’t stop living as well.’’

Ducey acknowledged that his efforts have had a two-pronged approach.

“This has always been about saving lives,’’ he said. And it’s also about livelihoods in the state of Arizona. We’re going to do this in a balanced and responsible way for the people of Arizona.’’

Christ separately acknowledged that there have been some “hot spots,’’ or places in the state where the virus has spread quicker than elsewhere. But Ducey rejected the possibility of giving city and county officials the options of imposing their own restrictions.

“I believe that the government that is closest to the people is best – except in a global pandemic,’’ he said.

“We want to have clarity and consistency for our citizens,’’ Ducey said. “And we want to reduce the confusion that’s happened across the state and across the country.’’

Ducey and Christ have repeatedly argued that Arizona has more confirmed cases of coronavirus than elsewhere because more people are getting tested.

But statistics from Johns Hopkins University, updated Thursday morning, show that Arizona, at 13 percent average, has a higher rate of the tests that come back positive than any other state.

 And the Biodesign Institute at Arizona State University found the positive test rate for Wednesday, the most recent figures available, actually hit 24 percent.

“We have noticed an increase in the percent positivity,’’ Christ said.

“We do know there is community spread,’’ she continued. “We are going to be working at trying to bring that back down.’’

Part of that, Christ said, will be a “public health message.’’

What that message includes, she said, is encouraging people to wear a cloth face covering when they cannot “physically distance’’ from others and to make sure that they’re staying home when they’re feeling sick.

Ducey endorsed that advice.

“I’m all for face masks when you can’t physically distance,’’ he said. And the governor said he does wear a mask in those circumstances.

“I was in Walgreens picking up some things on the way home and I’ve been to the grocery store,’’ Ducey said. “And in both places, I wore a face mask.’’

But masks remain voluntary.

“There are some people that can’t wear masks for whatever reason, shortness of breath or they are asthmatic,’’ the governor said.

Ducey also disputed reports that Arizona hospitals are reaching capacity.

Christ conceded reports from some hospitals – they self-report and she did not name names – showed that more than 80 percent of their beds were occupied. That is a trigger point at which, under the governor’s executive orders, a facility can no longer do elective surgery.

But the health director said she has not clamped down on any of them, saying she wants to work with hospital administrators to see if they agree with the numbers.

Ducey, for his part, said he was unconcerned even if hospitals do hit that 80 percent level.

He pointed out that all facilities are required to have plans in place to expand the number of beds by at least 25 percent if needed. 

The state also purchased the old and vacant St. Luke’s Hospital in Phoenix and is keeping it in what Christ calls a “warm ready’’ situation should the beds there be needed.

Members of the Health System Alliance of Arizona, which make up about 80 percent of hospital beds, put out a statement of its own that there is sufficient bed capacity “and surge plans are in place to continue to serve the people of Arizona.’’

Christ also said that there are sufficient doctors and nurses available should the number of COVID-19 patients increase sharply.

(3) comments

KenMcCarver

Democrat Platform & Goals:

Democrats want to make this election all about President Trump. NOT their platform & Goals.

At least know who & what you are voting for.

*End all deportations of illegal aliens, if you get here, you stay. Bernie’s website

calls it a “moratorium” on deportations.

*Citizenship for 20 to 50 million illegal aliens, DACA & TPS recipients with a cost of

billions.

*Massive tax increases. All Democrat candidates have committed to tax increases

of various amounts.

*Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Green new deal.(which would create massive

unemployment, 100,000 jobs estimated in the transportation industry alone.) Joe

Biden supports.

*De-fund & terminate border patrol & ICE.

*Free Healthcare for Illegal aliens, DACA, TPS recipients (taxpayer funded with one

estimate at 52 trillion)

https://www.realclearpolitics.com/video/2019/06/27/all_dem_candidates_raise_hand_when_asked_if_illegal_immigrants_should_get_health_care_coverage_at_debate.html

*Ending of all private / employer based health care. “Medicare for all”, Feds run

everything.

*Illegal Aliens eligible for welfare & food stamps. (Elizabeth Warrens plan adopted)

*Reparations for race’s harmed by Caucasians. Joe Biden committed to “Reverend”

Al Sharpton's support for Sheila Jackson Lee’s racist reparations bill in the House.

Basically a tax will be levied on all Caucasians in America. (you can’t make this stuff

up)

https://www.cnbc.com/2019/04/05/2020-democrats-pledge-support-for-reparations-at-al-sharpton-led-convention.html

*Sanctuary Cities & States. Joe Biden supports sanctuary cities.

https://www.politico.com/news/2020/03/16/biden-conservatives-trump-132214

*Free college for all, including illegal aliens (taxpayer funded estimates in the

billions. Bernie Sanders plan adopted.

*Decriminalization of illegal entry into our country.

*Open Borders.

*Drivers Licenses for illegal aliens (already happening in states with Democrat

leadership.

*Late term abortions up to 9 months.

*Ending of all private / employer based health care. “Medicare for all”, Feds run

everything.

* Destruction and erasing our history.

KenMcCarver

How do you like Democrat Socialism? just like the third world isn’t it. Democrat

Governor’s & Mayors ordering Police to stand down while the city is looted, burned

citizens beaten in the streets. police stations actually taken over and allowed to

occupy.

What do these Mayors & Governors have in common?………

Tom Wolf (Gov PA), Jim Kenney (Mayor Philadelphia), JB Pritzker (Gov Il), Lori

Lightfoot (Mayor Chicago), Gavin Newsom (Gov CA) Kate Brown (Gov OR), Ted

Wheeler (Mayor Portland OR), Jay Inslee (Gov WA), Jenny Durkan (Mayor

Seattle), Andrew Cuomo (Gov NY), Bill Di Blasio, (Mayor NY) Tim Walz (Gov MN)

Jacob Frey (Mayor MN), Lyda Krewson (Mayor St. Louis), Gretchen Whitmer (Gov

MI), Mike Duggan (Mayor Detroit) , Keisha Bottoms (Mayor Atlanta GA)

All are Democrats who kept the economy in their states and cities closed as long as they could (many still are) and ordered Police in their cities to stand down.

There is no moderate wing of the Democrat party people and they really don’t care

about taxpayers except for their vote. If you vote for Joe Biden, you are voting for

Bernie Sanders, or Elizabeth Warren’s far left platform.. Joe will follow the radical

left’s agenda or Joe won’t get the support (and he is of) Nancy Pelosi, Val Demings,

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Valerie Jarrett,. Rashida Talib, Stacy Abrams, Ayanna

Pressley, Nancy Pelosi, Sheila Jackson Lee, Tom Perez, Maxine Waters, Al Green,

and llhan Omar.

This is the core of the socialists leftist wing of the Democrat party in Washington and they are firmly in charge.

What the media will never tell you........

http://lc.org/PDFs/Trump.Accomplishments.FINAL.pdf

https://www.frcaction.org/accomplishments

Steven

I'm relieved that masks are still voluntary and at least some politicians are not over reacting/ power hungry Candidate Bs.

https://bmjopen.bmj.com/content/5/4/e006577 - "As such (without a no-mask control), the finding of a much higher rate of infection in the cloth mask arm could be interpreted as harm caused by cloth masks..." not the only place online that touches on potential health issues of cloth masks (and effectiveness, or lack thereof)

The Candidate B comment is from these comics - https://crisiscomic.wordpress.com/covid-19-comics/politics/ ... but if you need a laugh, go to the cast page and read TP's entries [wink]

Welcome to the discussion.

Keep it Clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language.
PLEASE TURN OFF YOUR CAPS LOCK.
Don't Threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
Be Truthful. Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything.
Be Nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
Be Proactive. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
Share with Us. We'd love to hear eyewitness accounts, the history behind an article.