Many governors, including Governor Brian Kemp (R,GA) who started reopening their states have not seen dramatic increases in coronavirus deaths as critics suggested.
According to the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation report from May 12, the rates of infection would dramatically spike from hundreds of new cases a day up into the thousands by June and well into August of this year. Now that Georgia has had shelter-in-place lifted for 14 days and they are a month into the reopening of the state, new IHME predictions fall dramatically short of prior predictions.
The latest IHME model show dramatic updates on the projected number of new cases per day. As of yesterday, the state of Georgia is looking at no new COVID-19 cases by August and 367 daily cases by June.
Media outlets that came after Kemp as well as the other governors who reopened their states earlier have not retracted or corrected their original stories suggesting massive death tolls and overwhelmed hospitals.
According to a summary written by Erick Erickson, conservative blogger and radio host, after both publications of projections for COVID-19 IHME reports that such reporting caused angry media inquiries demanding explanations from Kemp, while after the model showing updated and dramatically lower data was released, Kemp did not receive such coverage.
Erickson, who says he got this information from someone “in the know” poises a question that many other conservative voices have expressed since yesterday’s updated IHME report. When will people like Governor Kemp and others who opened their states early get an apology?
Among media personalities most critical of states who have chosen to open sooner than others is journalist and author Ron Fournier.
Erickson addresses that critics such as Fournier seem to just be waiting to prove that all we needed was a little extra time to start seeing a spike in daily infection rates as a result of COVID-19 exposures in states opening too soon.
“Ron Fournier stated yesterday he was glad he was wrong, but also took a wait and see approach — maybe he was wrong and it’ll be five weeks before the bodies start piling up. He is not alone. Any error or overreaction on the part of the press and progressives is that we just need to wait a few more weeks.”
While states such as California are delaying state-wide shutdowns well into June, we will be able to reflect back on if that was the right choice when the next IHME report is updated.