New York’s Andrew Cuomo on Friday joined the stampede of Democratic governors shutting down restaurants despite scant evidence that they are driving a surge in Covid cases. Their shutdowns are hitting minorities the hardest and increasing economic inequality.
Democratic governors in Michigan, Illinois, Oregon and Washington in recent weeks have closed indoor dining. California Gov. Gavin Newsom has banned outdoor patios in most areas too. Mr. Cuomo said Friday that he’s shutting down indoor dining in New York City as of Monday.
According to state contact tracing data, restaurants and bars account for 1.4% of the virus spread in the state while household gatherings make up nearly 74%. That’s not surprising. In New York City, restaurants were limited to 25% capacity. Who limits capacity in their living rooms during football watch parties or Thanksgiving?
J.D. Tuccille reports on punitive federalism. Here’s his dire conclusion:
Even worse, government in our country claims near-absolute authority to intervene in almost all matters, as we’ve seen during the pandemic. That leaves little in life immune to dictates, revolt, and retaliation.
So, get accustomed to orders issued from on high that are then ignored by dissenting individuals and localities. And prepare for the resulting battles and attempted punishments. That sort of punitive federalism is likely to be a common sight in the years to come.