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Baker begins to look elsewhere for ventilators, is getting sick of pot-shop questions

COVID-19 Update: April 8, 2020

At his daily press conference, Gov. Baker said that while he's still hoping the federal government will come through with the hundreds of ventilators it promised Massachusetts a little over a week ago, he's not counting on it keeping its word.

"We are pursuing ventilators through other strategies as well," he said. He did not specify what that meant or if a local sports team's plane would be involved.

Baker also got a bit irritated when a reporter asked him about reconsidering making recreational pot shops "essential," like liquor stores are. He repeated his earlier comments that if he did let pot shops open, people would drive to Massachusetts from all over the northeast and defeat the social distancing he said is a key part in flattening the curve in Massachusetts.

He did not discuss making pot shops open to just Massachusetts residents and said he was getting sick of the topic, because he's really focused on slowing the surge of Covid-19 cases that could hit the state within the next couple of days and so "saving the lives of tens of thousands of people," and he would hope other people would feel that way as well.

He said he is cautiously optimistic that while Massachusetts numbers continue to rise, they do not seem to be showing the same amount of exponential growth seen in Wuhan, Italy and New York.

Also today, Baker announced he has filed legislation to make it harder to sue doctors, nurses and EMTs for emergency work they do during the current Covid-19 emergency.

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Comments

Several people have noted this on social media. I have called the governor's office and emailed the governor's office on this.

Baker and the other participants need to repeat the questions from the press. They are not audible so many answers make no sense.

In today's conference which I watched on mass.gov, there were 3 different questions that Baker answered with "yes". Yes to what? I stopped watching in frustration.

By the way, calling Baker's office was an exercise in frustration . After being put on hold for several minutes, a man answered "hello. He didn't identify himself or ask how he could help me. When I gave him my name and asked for his, he wouldn't tell me. "I'm an aide" he said.

Poor communication all around.

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Voting closed 51

Um, Baker's kind of busy right now trying to stop a pandemic in the state without being sabotaged by the feds. Your concerns about the audio at the press conferences are not a priority.

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We all understand that our medical providers are under severe pressure. But eliminating the right of a patient to sue for alleged malpractice is not the solution. It appears Baker is saying there should be no accountability, and we should just accept whatever happens with no recourse. I disagree.

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I don’t blame him . Enough with Pot .

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Keeping them locked down for recreational means driving more people back to the black market and probably increasing the risk of infections because there's no control and most likely less social distancing.

With the dispensaries you can enforce rules like scheduled appointments, spacing in lines, protective measures for the staff (like the plexiglass in supermarkets) and so forth. If his concern is really reducing risk then it seems as though limited sales to state residents at licensed recreational dispensaries is probably the better option to his complete shutdown.

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Most of the "activists" screaming about the dispensaries being closed for rec spent 100% of their time shitting on them. Never mind that ATG and NETA had packed lines they did nothing about until they had to.

A month ago, they were screaming about the CEO of Rev Clinics ignoring possible sexual harassment at his shops and now the same "activists" want to put 325 a z in his pocket ? Plus tax?

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I don't blame him for getting annoyed. He's trying to save lives here and prevent deaths and these idiots keep showing up to his press conference about saving lives and asking to get access to weed. I've watched his update every day, he gets asked that every time. He's right about keeping people from out of state from coming in and exacerbating the problem. You can still get medical marijuana if you have a medical need for it. I don't understand the hysteria over recreational marijuana shops being closed. Hey rec smokers, think of someone other than yourselves. You'll survive without weed. You won't end up in the hospital without it. The reason they kept the liquor stores open is because hospitals didn't want ERs filled with people in delerium tremens taking up needed bedspace, and because liquor stores aren't based on out of state customers.
Whatever the politics are of the alcohol vs. marijuana debate, I wish everyone would put it aside and quit whining about what's essential and what's not essential and being able to get your alcohol versus your weed. Jesus, just fucking stay home and follow the guidelines so we can flatten the curve faster. This is life and death.

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We all know he doesn't want pot shops, never did, so he brushes off legitimate questions of fairness. That's some petty b.s.

If we can buy booze, we should be able to buy pot. It's quite simple and his excuse that it's to keep people out of the state is just some b.s. he made up. As many have pointed out he could just restrict sales to Massachusetts residents.

I personally decided to quit both pot and booze for the duration, but for some people they can provide critical stress reduction in these tough times.

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Voting closed 48

He explained it several times. People from out of state regularly travel to Mass to buy recreational weed. Is there something there you're missing? I'm not a fan of Baker but that is the answer he's given and it makes perfect sense. Are you a dimwit?

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As many have pointed out he could just restrict sales to Massachusetts residents.

Nope. It's unconstitutional.

Article 4, Section 2, Clause 1 prohibits a state from discriminating against people from other states, including with respect to commerce. In Corfield v. Coryell, 6 F. Cas. 546 (C.C.E.D. Pa. 1823), the federal circuit court held that privileges and immunities in respect of which discrimination is barred include

protection by the Government; the enjoyment of life and liberty ... the right of a citizen of one State to pass through, or to reside in any other State, for purposes of trade, agriculture, professional pursuits, or otherwise; to claim the benefits of the writ of habeas corpus; to institute and maintain actions of any kind in the courts of the State; to take, hold and dispose of property, either real or personal; and an exemption from higher taxes or impositions than are paid by the other citizens of the State.

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I agree that it would be unconstitutional. But someone needs to tell Rhode Island about this, so they'll stop harassing golfers from Massachusetts. As well as the MA liquor regulators who encourage stores to refuse out-of-state IDs.

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Get over yourself. You'll survive without weed. If it really is a stress reliever for you you should be able to still get it medically by prescription. That hasn't been restricted. And yes, if you have one state that has rec marijuana surrounded by states that don't, you're gonna have people coming in the state to get it. That's people who are potentially infected and clearly not social distancing, and can bring infections into the state. that defeats the purpose of social distancing, it's not b.s.
Try Xanax. Psychiatrists are more than willing to dispense it right now.

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From the person who drinks beer or wine to unwind.

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Charlie Baker is a Republican who will not tell you the whole truth in fear of offending Donald Trump

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If lying will help save lives in Massachusetts, let him lie. The truth can wait.

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Lies and misinformation has slowed the state's response (I can't believe that needs to be made clear to some people)

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Who is lying to whom. And why.

Baker's wily ways are intended to save Massachusetts lives.

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Baker's wily ways are intended to save Massachusetts lives.

He continues to lie at each and every press conference when he says his guidelines exempt only "essential" jobs.

Landscaping for example is defined at "not essential" but ok to work if social distancing is practiced. So he's exempting non-essential jobs . He's lying.

From mass.gov

Is landscaping or non-emergency tree removal considered an essential service? NO but you may be able to continue operating

Then they go on to say if practicing social distancing.....it's ok to work.

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Voting closed 11

Another thing my father used to say when I was a kid: He would call somebody a "whine-ass."

Exit's over there, Chuck. You can quit the job if you don't like it. Cue Jim Rome:

When the going gets tough, quit.
If you can't stand the heat, quit.
When life hands you lemons, quit.
If at first you don't succeed, quit.

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Voting closed 17

If the worst criticism he takes in all this is that he wouldn't let recreational pot shops open, he can probably rest easy.

I understand why people want it and why he's opposed. The out of state thing is clearly code for "because I said so".

FWIW, I think they should allow the shops to open but ban all inhaled recreational drugs, cigarettes and vaping included. The virus attacks the lungs.

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The worst criticism is that he let it get out of control trying to stay on Trumps good side and then people started to die

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But he's been pretty independent of the White House since Trump was elected. He knows he can fuck with the MBTA and still get re-elected but as soon as he's seen as Trump's buddy, he's toast in MA.

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Who did he sell our ventilators to. But I'm guessing he won't.

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From Talking Points Memo:

According to [IL Gov.] Pritzker, the US military planes airlift the PPE and other medical supplies to the US and then hand them over to the major medical supply distributors the White House taskforce is working with. That part was clear from the discussion April 2nd. What Pritzker confirmed is that the states then have to bid against each other to purchase the supplies from those distributors.

My question is: Did MA already pay for the stuff Trump seized, and if so, did we get the money back?

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Talking Points Memo got a FEMA memo that describes how the seized equipment is disposed of.

The Supply Chain Task Force is working with the major commercial distributors to facilitate the rapid distribution of critical resources in short supply to locations where they are needed most. This partnership enables FEMA and its federal partners to take a whole-of-America approach to combatting COVID-19. The task force is providing distributors with up-to-date information on the locations across the country hardest hit by COVID-19 or in most need of resources now and in the future. The distributors have agreed to focus portions of their distributions on these areas in order to alleviate the suffering of the American people.

TPM says the 'portion' that the distributors focus on hurting areas is 50%, and that they get to sell the other 50% on the regular market. It's not clear whether that market includes states fighting bidding wars for the equipment, as some allege.

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He's no Cuomo but he seems to be doing alright for us.
Speaking of pot shops, who would enforce the hypothetical resident only restriction? What would prevent some rednecks from another state causing a fuss at a shop over this? Why would we want that right now?
I kind of see his reasoning on that.

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I feel bad for the pot stores and shop there myself, but I agree with Baker. I've seen too many idiots lining up and not doing their distancing. I don't think the shops would be able to handle the crowds, even if they just did pre-order and pick-up. If someone really wants weed, they can get it.

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