Group rallies for governor to move forward in reopening Delaware

A group of about 250 gathered in front of the Dover Mall to reopen Delaware in a Enough is Enough rally on Tuesday. (Delaware State News/Marc Clery)

DOVER — A group that calls itself “Stand Up Delaware” could not be denied getting its message out to move forward in reopening Delaware amidst the COVID-19 crisis Tuesday evening, despite hot, steamy conditions and a temporary blockage to the Dover Mall entrance before its rally began.

The group of around 250 attendees had their message displayed on numerous handmade signs in front of the mall near U.S. 13 — which were answered by honking horns of several passers-by — imploring Gov. John Carney to move forward toward reopening Delaware to protect the state’s businesses and its economy.

Sen. Dave Lawson, R-Marydel, was pleased at the turnout, which was punctuated by numerous American flags being held up proudly along the highway.

“Read the signs, ‘Enough is enough,’ that says it all,” Sen. Lawson said. “The public has had enough with the misinformation, with the constantly changing new goalposts, they’ve just had enough. Masks are good one day and they’re bad the next. We’ve got so many deaths. We’ve got to watch what’s going on with the hospitals, yet hospital usage is way down yet we’re still going to heavier controls on them.

A member of the Delaware Patriots talks to one of about 250 who gathered in front of the Dover Mall to reopen Delaware in a Enough is Enough rally on Tuesday.

“The governor has lost the ballgame here. He’s out.”

Sen. Lawson and the other attendees at the rally are convinced that Gov. Carney doesn’t want to move forward to Phase 3 in the reopening of Delaware, but actually would like to revert to Phase 1.

Gov. Carney announced on June 25 a delay in moving to Phase 3 of Delaware’s economic reopening and reiterated that statement Tuesday, casting a weary eye toward the state’s beach resort towns which have seen a recent surge in positive COVID-19 cases.

“In Delaware, we are beating this disease,” said Gov. Carney, in a statement. “We have flattened the curve. But that’s because Delawareans stayed home and made significant sacrifices to keep others safe. Make no mistake: COVID-19 has not gone away. We’ve seen what has happened in other states when folks let their guard down. Let’s not be one of those states.”

About 250 people gathered and held signs as cars pass in front of the Dover Mall during an Enough is Enough rally on Tuesday.

Richard Harpster, of Dover, wondered how long businesses in Delaware can keep being put on the backburner during the fight against the coronavirus.

“This is about ‘Enough is Enough’ in respect to the shutdown and the detrimental effects it’s had on our community and our businesses,” Mr. Harpster said. “It’s not just that we are delaying going into Phase 3, but there are talks about moving us backwards, back into Phase 1 and that’s just not something this community can handle. This state cannot handle it financially.”

Some individuals at the rally claimed that state officials have been falsely manipulating the COVID-19 case numbers over the past couple of weeks.

Lee Murphy, who is running for U.S. Congress this November, said he was there to fight against a little bit of everything that’s been going on.

“This is a little bit about tyranny,” Mr. Murphy said, “and we need to reopen this economy and the governor of this state has basically been a dictator since day one with emergency, after emergency, after emergency. We can’t survive without an economy.

“We need to take our precautions and protect those that are vulnerable. Me personally, I had the COVID-19 back in March and I recovered, like most people do. I think people have to be given some credit for personal responsibility, which I think most Americans have done during this crisis.”

Priscilla Alexander believes that Gov. Carney is abusing his power and that’s what brought her out to the rally at the Dover Mall.

“Governor Carney keeping us in Phase 2 and is now closing some businesses arbitrarily because he considers them to be a risk because healthy young people are getting the disease, but they don’t have symptoms,” she said. “It’s completely unnecessary and it seems like an overreach of his power and we’re here to protest that.”

Gov. Carney announced Tuesday that bar seating will be banned in the state’s beach restaurants starting Friday after an uptick in coronavirus cases there.

About 250 people gathered and held signs as cars pass in front of the Dover Mall during an Enough is Enough rally on Tuesday.

Sen. Lawson said part of the COVID-19 crisis is all part of a grand design to keep the economy sputtering until November’s elections.

“It’s an economy killer, and that’s their intent,” he said, of the Democrats. “They kill the economy, they kill the chance of Republicans winning.

“This is just folks saying, ‘We’ve had enough. We’re here, we’re done.’ There’s thousands and thousands of people that are fed up with this and we will be heard.”

Helpful Coronavirus links

Delaware Division of Health Coronavirus Page
CDC: About the Coronavirus Disease 2019
CDC: What to do if You Are Sick
Johns Hopkins Coronavirus Resource Center
AP News Coronavirus Coverage
Reopening Delaware: Resources for Businesses
Delaware Phase 2 guidance

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