Northam Calls Struggling Small Business Owners “Selfish”

Northam Calls Struggling Small Business Owners “Selfish”

December 11, 2020

On Thursday, Gov. Northam announced new restrictions on private citizens and business owners. During his press conference, Northam called struggling small business owners “selfish” for struggling to comply with his previous executive orders.

“Some people and some businesses are literally being selfish. By not doing the right thing, they are making things harder for you and for everyone across Virginia.” – Gov. Ralph Northam

Republican House Minority Leader Todd Gilbert issued a statement shortly after the Governor’s press conference that questioning the effectiveness of such stringent guidelines.

“Once again, the Governor has introduced draconian new restrictions, but failed to articulate to Virginians how they will stop the spread of COVID. For example, how will a blatantly unconstitutional curfew — which will no doubt create resistance — help save lives? Is COVID spreading at late-night gatherings?” Gilbert said.
 
“Governor Northam must first and foremost follow the Constitution, and he must tell Virginians how these rules will fight COVID. Virginians aren’t dumb. If the Governor gives them the information, I have no doubt that Virginians will act on it in a responsible manner. But ‘trust me’ is no longer good enough.“—Delegate Todd Gilbert

Earlier this year, Virginia legislators and activists took to social media to voice their frustration with the Governor’s erratic mandates. Local Tazewell County Attorneys Flux and Tamara Neo have even offered pro-bono legal services for anyone in their community charged in violation of the executive order.

“Calling all Virginia lawyers: Our small businesses and private citizens are hurting immeasurably under the Governor’s latest COVID restrictions. We are offering our help to those charged in our county pro-bono. I’m calling on you to consider doing the same where you are. Please contact me if you are willing to help.“—Tamara Neo

Democrat State Senator Chap Peterson, one of Northam’s closest allies, has called his regulatory barrage over the past year ‘dictatorial.’ Petersen filed suit against Northam earlier this year when small business owners in Loudoun County were reeling from the Governor’s shutdown orders.

 InsideNOVA: “Petersen, who represents a portion of Fairfax County, including Vienna, this spring filed suit on behalf of Fujiya House restaurant in Fredericksburg and Zion Springs vineyard and wedding venue in Hamilton, in Loudoun County, both of which he said effectively had been shut down through Phase 2 of the pandemic because of the governor’s directives

…‘These executive ordinances have either got to be approved by the legislature or they’ve got to eventually be vacated,” he said. “At some point, we’ve got to go back to the rule of law. I know that sounds a little bit radical.’”

In a letter sent to Gov. Northam earlier this year, The Virginia Association of Chiefs of Police warned Northam of the dangerous implications of issuing such an overreaching mandate.

“Wearing a mask, social distancing and limited trips outside the home are the best advice we can give Virginians, and we should continue to recommend these prevention measures. However, turning good advice into a mandate that has to be enforced with trespassing citations and physical removal of violators destroys police/community relations and puts business owners in a no-win situation: either be prepared to confront people you value as customers, or avoid the risk of a potentially violent confrontation by keeping your business closed.“—Virginia Chiefs of Police Association

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