Governor condemns domestic terrorism, unveils letter from CDC director Dr. Robert Redfield saying public health guidance should not be written into law
FRANKFORT, Ky. (Jan. 11, 2021) – Today, Gov. Andy Beshear announced more than 2,000 new COVID-19 cases, condemned domestic terrorism and said General Assembly actions that would significantly limit the state’s ability to fight the deadly virus are dangerous and unfeasible.
“We’ve seen some bills move through the General Assembly that attempt to create new ways of addressing the coronavirus,” said Gov. Beshear. “One bill that passed attempted to put U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidelines into law as the law that could be enforced. Today I received a letter from Dr. Robert Redfield, CDC director, cautioning against this.”
“I want to make it clear that CDC guidance should not be interpreted as regulation; rather, they are meant as recommendations. It should be used in consideration for specific state and/or local regulations, but this guidance is meant to be flexible and adaptable,” Dr. Redfield said. “It is not meant to be prescriptive or interpreted as standards that can be regulated.”
The CDC consistently has backed the effectiveness of Gov. Beshear’s restrictions aimed at preventing the spread of COVID-19 in restaurants and bars, gyms, schools and other venues.
On Monday, Gov. Beshear also condemned domestic terrorists and a threat made at public health commissioner Dr. Steven Stack’s home.
“One of the ways we absolutely know what individuals attempted to do, in terms of harming or kidnapping elected officials, were the zip ties some of those individuals carried into the U.S. Capitol and to our State Capitol,” said Gov. Beshear. “These aren’t people who believe in the rule of law; they are people who believe they can take the law into their own hands to bully and intimidate others. We here in Kentucky will not be bullied. Anybody who believes that domestic terror is the way to go, we’ll be ready for you. And to those who in their elected positions will use the words of hate or anger, and will try to stir it up – stop.
“Someone vandalized our own Dr. Stack’s home, spray-painting ‘COVID is PCR fraud’ on his mailbox. This wasn’t about the spray paint. It was about those individuals trying to create terror, saying we know where you live and we know how to get to you. But we will not let that happen. Because of Dr. Stack’s work, thousands of people are alive today who wouldn’t have been without him. Trying to create fear in his family is the lowest form of low.”
Today, in accordance with a proclamation from the White House, Gov. Beshear directed that flags at all state office buildings be lowered to half-staff until sunset Jan. 13, as a sign of respect for the service and sacrifice of United States Capitol Police Officers Brian Sicknick and Howard Liebengood, as well as law enforcement in Kentucky and across the country. For more information, see the full release here.
As of 4 p.m. Monday, Jan. 11, Gov. Beshear reported the following COVID-19 numbers:
New cases today: 2,085
New deaths today: 21
Positivity rate: 12.35%
Total deaths: 2,922
Currently hospitalized: 1,709
Currently in ICU: 381
Currently on ventilator: 207
Top counties with the most positive cases today are: Jefferson, Fayette, Kenton, Boone, Madison, Morgan and Warren. Each of these counties reported 60 or more new cases; Jefferson County alone reported 358.
To see a list of those reported lost to the virus today, click here.
“Today we mourn the loss of another educator in Kentucky. Simone Parker was only 46 years old when she passed away from COVID-19 earlier this month. She taught for 19 years at Trigg County High School in Cadiz and was described by everyone who knew her as an extraordinary educator. She always said, ‘Once they are mine, they are always mine,’ about her students. And that was true,” said Gov. Beshear. “She was often found taking care of her kids in and out of the classroom, doing whatever was needed to make sure they succeeded.
“Her husband, William Parker, shared that once you met Simone you were considered family to her. She never met a stranger.
“William and Simone were set to celebrate 24 years of marriage later this year before he, Simone and her sister who lives with them all tested positive for COVID-19. Unfortunately, it hit Simone harder, and the Monday before Christmas she had to be taken to the hospital. During this time she was intubated and sedated, and couldn’t speak. William said the hardest part was not being able to truly say goodbye to his wife of 23 years.
“Today we lift William and the rest of Simone’s family and community in prayer, including her students, colleagues and friends who she cared for.”
To view the full daily report, incidence rate map, information on testing locations, vaccines, contact tracing, school reports and guidance, guidance for health care providers and the White House Coronavirus Task Force reports for Kentucky and more, visit kycovid19.ky.gov.