Economic downturn blamed on lockdown policies
South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem (R) told the audience at an annual conservative conference on Feb. 27 that lockdowns and other restrictions imposed by state and local governments were to blame for the economic crash in 2020, not the pandemic which they were intended to snuff out.
Noem has become the target of establishment media and Democrat politicians for her approach to the pandemic. South Dakota was the only state which never ordered any businesses or churches to close, never imposed a lockdown or a mask mandate, and refrained from classifying businesses into essential and non-essential categories.
“COVID didn’t crush the economy. Government crushed the economy,” Noem said, prompting applause from the crowd at the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC).
“Just as quickly, government turned around and held itself out as the savior, and frankly the Treasury Department can’t print money fast to keep up with Congress’s wishes. But not everyone has followed this path,” she continued.
Noem is among a few governors, including Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (R-Fla.), who have bucked the national and global trend of imposing strict lockdowns on the populace in an attempt to limit the spread of the CCP (Chinese Communist Party) virus, commonly known as COVID-19. The lockdowns resulted in an economic disaster, paring back the gains made during the Trump administration.
There is no historical precedent or controlled trials to support the argument for lockdowns and arguments over their efficacy have largely been split along political lines. Former President Donald Trump repeatedly accused Democrat governors and mayors of using the lockdowns to snuff out the economic boom set in motion by his low-tax, deregulation agenda.
Noem said that Anthony Fauci, one of the lead members of Trump’s White House Coronavirus Task Force, told her that South Dakota’s hospitals would be treating 10,000 patients at the worst point of the pandemic. She said the number was actually 600 patients at the worst point.
“I don’t know if you agree with me, but Dr. Fauci is wrong a lot,” Noem said, drawing raucous cheers from the crowd.
It should be clear to everyone but blue state governors by now that lockdowns were a huge mistake that did more harm than good. States like South Dakota, Florida, and Texas did much better in dealing with the virus and in distributing the vaccine.