On Wednesday, embattled Democrat Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham, who was accused and later settled with $62,500 in campaign funds for sexual assault, held a COVID-19 press conference. The presser comes after quite some time without one, where she claimed New Mexico could be open in nine weeks. She said, “In nine weeks, New Mexico, we are open,” given that 60% of the population is vaccinated by June 30.
The news comes as more counties shifted from red, yellow, and green status to turquoise while the criteria for what these colors mean changed again to mean case numbers modified from 5% to 7.5%, test positivity rates move from eight to 10 per 100,000 people, and percentage of the vaccinated population is added as a new requirement with a 35% weekly threshold.
Under the new criteria, 24 counties are in “turquoise,” six are in “green,” three are in “yellow,” and none are in “red.”
Human Services Secretary David Scrase said, “I think this is clearly doable,” but “it’s going to take extra work,” which can be interpreted as code as the administration once again moving the goalposts.
However, if the state meets the 60% goal for “100% reopening,” it still means that indoor mask requirements will remain, masking for youth sports will remain, the Coronavirus state of emergency will remain, New Mexicans are still on stay-at-home orders. This comes despite a masked Rio Rancho athlete collapsing due to lack of air during a race due to Gov. Lujan Grisham’s mask-mandated athletics.
Dr. Scrase and Gov. Lujan Grisham also both indicated that in the future, annual “booster” inoculations are likely coming.
Countless New Mexico jobs have been destroyed forever. People have left the state in droves due to the lockdown orders. Many have been reliant on the government’s unemployment system despite some jobs reopening. New Mexico trails the entire nation with employment numbers as the third-worst unemployment state.
During the pandemic, Lujan Grisham has repeatedly skirted her own lockdown orders, forced New Mexicans to stand in cold breadlines over the holidays, misused government funds to buy $200 per pound Wagyu beef steaks and fine wine, and constantly changed the science and criteria on reopening the state.