On Tuesday, April 7, 2020, Dallas County commissioners voted to restrict County Judge Clay Jenkins’ emergency powers.
They argued that they were unaware of certain sensitive decisions taken by Jenkins.
These Commissioners voted to have Jenkins inform all four of commissioners and allow them to meet up before deciding to impose more restrictions on essential businesses. On top of that, they required him to obtain a majority vote before extending the shelter-in-place order beyond April 30, 2020.
Ever since March 19, Jenkins has issued a number of orders which included limits on group gatherings and a shelter-in-place order that compelled non-essential businesses and services to shut down two weeks ago.
On April 3, 2020, commissioners approved the extension of the disaster declaration until May 20. Additionally, Jenkins announced on Twitter that he would extend stay-at-home orders until April 30.
The restrictions were weakened after a four-hour meeting. Jenkins even hinted before the vote that the originally proposed restrictions were “dangerous” and would keep him from acting decisively during a pandemic.
“We’re just not going to be able to get things done if we stop and have a two- or three-hour meeting every day on things like whether or not people should solicit at your home or not,” Jenkins said before the vote took place.
Commissioner John Wiley Price, who represents a large portion of southern Dallas, declared that there’s been a “throat choke” on his constituents during the past few weeks.
Price said he was “incensed” by decisions Jenkins took unilaterally.
“If you can confer with 250 people every day, or every other day, then you can confer with us,” Price said to Jenkins.
Price has advocated for pawn shops and check-cashing businesses to be reopened, saying people in the communities he represents would benefit from the re-opening of the economy.
Jenkins ordered on April 6, 2020 that those businesses could open up their doors provided that they implement certain social distancing policies and follow consumer protection measures laid out in his amended order.
Commissioner J.J. Koch, who put forward the amendment to restrict Jenkins’ power, said he was of the opinion that it was “prudent” for commissioners to vote on these issues together.
“It’s a little bit concerning that there are still pieces that have to be addressed this late in the game at such a rapid pace,” Koch stated. “We shouldn’t be in this place.”
Commissioner Theresa Daniel said her colleagues need to be in the loop when it comes to making decisions due to the resources they can offer.
“What I see in this is not that we are putting barricades or barriers to progress or addressing issues that must be addressed,” Daniels commented. “We agree with you and appreciate all those efforts, but we are a part of this county, we are a part of these decisions, and we have not been kept in the loop.”
Rival Candidate Spreads Fake News Attacks Against Anti-Lockdown Hero Shelley Luther
Shelley Luther, the candidate for Texas’ Senate District 30, is beginning to face heat from her rivals in the Senate seat’s special election.
One of her opponents, Drew Springer, the State Representative for Texas’s 68th District, called her out for supposed hypocrisy on the Wuhan virus lockdowns.
On Facebook he commented, “Shelley Luther sang a different tune about forced COVID-19 shutdowns before she realized she could use it for her political benefit.
While she thought her record could be deleted from Facebook, there was only so long she could hide. #ShutdownShelley”
Springer referred to a comment Luther made on March 16 where she said “Just my opinion. If some major cities are closing down building where large gatherings occur, then EVERY city should. The problem will not fix if some people are out and about.”
However, several users commenting on Springer’s Facebook post were quick to point out some nuances in Luther’s comments.
The main gist of their comments was that Luther said that it didn’t make any sense for a few venues to remain open and others not be closed. In essence, she was calling for policy consistency, not for selective enforcement of lockdowns.
Luther made a name for herself earlier this year when she resisted the city of Dallas’ shutdown order and continued operating her business in defiance of this ordinance.
She would later face jail time for her refusal to comply but would later be pardoned by Texas Governor Greg Abbott.
Luther has received endorsements from organizations such as Texas Gun Rights PAC for her staunch liberty activism and commitment to American principles such as the Second Amendment.
The Dallas salon owner is one of the more high-profile state level candidates running for office and has become a national figure of resistance against the Wuhan virus lockdowns.
A Luther victory would represent a major win for Texas conservatives who have been disappointed with the legislative body’s performance over the years.
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