A New York Times article provides a fresh state-by-state look at which states are reopening and which are still shut down due to COVID-19. Notably, Illinois was one of the first to shut down and it will be one of the last to reopen.
Illinois was one of only eight states to have shut down as early as March 23. Nearly two months later, Illinois is just one of four states “to remain on lockdown, with stay-at-home orders in place and most businesses shuttered,” according to a New York Times comparison as of May 15. Michigan, New Jersey and Delaware were the other three states.
Illinois’ position has become even more extreme in recent days. Gov. Pritzker has just added new emergency rules that threaten jail time to any business owner found violating the governor’s shutdown orders.
At Wirepoints, we’ve often documented what a national outlier Illinois is fiscally. So it is, also, with Gov. Pritzker’s emergency order and reopening plan, which are beyond what nearly all other states are doing.
Thirty-one states are already reopening, while 11 other states are reopening on a regional basis. Six additional states – Connecticut, Kentucky, Massachusetts, Minnesota, New Mexico and Vermont – are set to reopen next week.
A separate state-to-state comparison recently released by Statista shows death rates by state per 100,000 people. Illinois has the ninth-worst COVID-19 fatality rate in the country, at 29 per 100,000 in population. New York (140), New Jersey (107), Connecticut (85) and Massachusetts (75) top the nation’s list.
Despite higher death rates than Illinois, New York and Pennsylvania are already reopening in some areas, Connecticut and Massachusetts are reopening soon, and Louisiana and Rhode Island are already fully reopening.
Of the nine-worst states, only Michigan and New Jersey join Illinois in maintaining a lockdown.
Looking at the map of reopenings, you can tell governors around the country are using science and data that Gov. Pritzker continues to ignore: the cost, in lives and livelihoods, of shutdowns.