The pandemic landscape remains incredibly bleak:
In nine states, more than 1 in 1,000 people have now died of coronavirus-related causes, while daily covid-19 deaths nationwide are climbing to levels not seen since early in the pandemic.
The list reflects the far-reaching toll of the crisis, spanning early hot spots such as New York, Southern states hit hard in the summer and rural parts of the country with increasingly strained hospitals. And it is growing.
On Friday, South Dakota became the latest to hit this grim marker, with others on the cusp as the country surpassed 13 million known coronavirus cases during a holiday season upended by the pandemic. Even with travel significantly down from last year, millions went through airport checkpoints in the days leading up to Thanksgiving, and governors on Friday urged people not to let down their guard amid Black Friday shopping.
Hardcore Trump governors still don’t give a shit:
In South Dakota, for instance, Gov. Kristi L. Noem (R) remains resistant to a statewide mask mandate. She has also given her blessing to mass gatherings, encouraging people to come out over the summer for a nearly 500,000-person motorcycle rally that many experts feared would be a superspreader of the virus.
Within weeks of the 10-day rally, the Dakotas, along with Wyoming, Minnesota and Montana, had the highest new infections per capita in the country, though experts say it is impossible to know how many of those cases stemmed from the event, given failures to track and contact-trace attendees.
While Noem attributed spiking cases in the wake of the gathering to increased testing — echoing President Trump’s statements about the United States as a whole — that cannot account for the recent surge, and current covid-19 hospitalizations in South Dakota also rose dramatically. Hospitalizations in the state exploded in September after remaining close to or below 100, peaking earlier this month at more than 600.
Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (R), in contrast, on Tuesday extended an executive order that bans city and county governments from enforcing mask ordinances or limits on restaurant capacity.
Going to be really fun wanting to see to what extent the Covid Barrett Court requires the just-let-’em-die approach to be national.