Democratic Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf has said that his state couldn’t really reopen until a coronavirus vaccine was available.
Army Veteran and Republican congressional candidate Sean Parnell fired back Monday, calling Wolf’s claim “absolutely absurd.” (RELATED: ‘I Will Never Buy That’: Veterans Fire Back Over ‘Betsy Ross Flag’ Removed From Soccer Game)
“I think that’s what it’s going to take to really get our economy back to normal, and I really think that can’t happen fully, 100%, until we have a vaccine that is foolproof,” Wolf said last week.
Gov. Tom Wolf said Wednesday he is talking with professional sports leagues about events in Pennsylvania, but he doesn’t believe residents will be completely comfortable going back to pre-pandemic normalcy until there is a coronavirus vaccine.https://t.co/B6M9FH23CU
— TribLIVE.com (@TribLIVE) May 20, 2020
Parnell appeared Monday on “Fox & Friends” to respond to the statement:
“When you hear your government saying we need a ‘foolproof’ vaccine before we open up the state, what do you say to that?” host Pete Hegseth asked.
“It is absolutely absurd,” Parnell replied. “We might not ever have a vaccine. By the way, that was never the goal. It was 15 days to slow the spread. 15 became 30 days to slow the spread. And then, from the governor, we can’t reopen because we need more testing. We can’t reopen because we need more ventilators. We can’t open because we need more PPE. Now, guess what? We can’t reopen because now we need a full vaccine.”
Parnell went on to note that Pennsylvania had suffered the same preventable tragedy as New York — a rash of coronavirus cases and deaths in nursing homes after state officials mandated that those nursing homes accept patients even if they had positive or suspected positive COVID-19 tests.
“Look, 80% of the deaths in Pennsylvania have happened in nursing homes,” Parnell explained, adding, “Every death, every death is a tragedy. But no amount of locking down our economy in perpetuity would have prevented those deaths. Do you know what would have? Changing our policy of mandating that nursing homes take COVID positive patients.”
“Pennsylvania stands on a very thin line between hope and darkness. You know, we have businesses around here, by the way, by the way, Democrat and Republican businesses around here, that are about to close their doors forever,” Parnell concluded, noting that nearly 30% of the state was unemployed in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic. “We have no choice but to reopen and reopen safely.”
Parnell is hoping to unseat Democratic Pennsylvania Rep. Conor Lamb in Pennsylvania’s 17th Congressional District.