State Representative Brian Elder of Michigan’s 96th District is not attending the Tuesday, April 7 legislative session.
Elder says after the death of his friend and colleague Representative Isaac Robinson of suspected coronavirus and two other representatives testing positive for the disease, he does not want to risk bringing the illness back to his constituents in Bay County. He says it’s too great a risk, especially when representitves from Wayne, Oakland and Macomb counties may attend, where Michigan’s COVID-19 hotpots are.
Elder also calls the session a sham, saying it’s completely false to claim April 7 was ever the deadline for extending Governor Gretchen Whitmer’s emergency powers, which are effective through April 29. He says the session is only to grant a one day extension. He says any legal arguments regarding the issue should be dealt with in the courts.
Timothy Beson, owner of Beson’s Market in Bay City and who is running for Elder’s seat, says Elder is shirking his responsibility as a leader while hospital workers, grocery store employees and others are working daily, with less pay than a state representative, during the pandemic.