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Sheriffs test positive for coronavirus after vowing not to enforce mask orders

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A number of sheriffs are refusing to enforce coronavirus mask orders and lockdowns, and now some of them are becoming infected with the potentially deadly virus.

Their defiance of statewide orders echoes the right-wing “constitutional sheriff” movement whose adherents refuse to enforce gun laws, and is based on the fallacious claim that county sheriffs are the highest constitutional authorities in the nation, reported The Guardian.

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“The Constitution trumps everything,” said Sheriff Tracy Murphree, of Denton County, Texas. “When people are told to do something that violates their civil rights, it invites chaos and protest.”

“I can tell you this – I am not the mask police,” said Richard Jones, of Butler County, Ohio. “I am not going to enforce any mask-wearing. That is not my responsibility, that is not my job. People should be able to make those choices themselves.”

At least 60 sheriffs — many of whom previously defied gun laws — have publicly stated they would refuse to enforce COVID-19 orders, and at least one of them has subsequently tested positive for the virus.

“I’m glad I found out that I had it,” said Sheriff Mark Lamb, of Pinal County, Arizona, who tested positive at the White House ahead of a meeting with President Donald Trump.

Lamb believes he was infected at a meet-and-greet with hundreds of supporters, after he spoke to Fox News about his defiance of Gov. Doug Ducey’s extension of stay-at-home orders.

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“We are here to protect the people from government overreach, we are here to protect their rights,” he told Fox News. “I felt like an order like this, to arrest people, to cite them, was going too far.”

A Florida sheriff announced Friday that he had tested positive for COVID-19 after refusing to enforce mask orders.

“I am encouraging anyone who is not feeling up to par to get tested,” said Volusia County Sheriff Mike Chitwood. “I have no idea how I contracted this and that is a lesson in itself: Anyone can catch this.”

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A defiant sheriff in California changed his tune on mask orders after cases surged in his county.

“Wear your masks, do your social distancing, wash your hands,” said Sheriff Vernon Warnke, of Merced County, California. “Please take it seriously.”

Two months before the spike in his county, Warnke claimed on Facebook that Gov. Gavin Newsom ordered the public safety measures to make residents “dependant [sic] on government assistance so he could maintain this control once this ‘pandemic’ is declared over.”

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The Guardian reports that another defiant sheriff in California had tested positive for the virus, but it’s not clear which law enforcement official had become infected.


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Here are fourteen things people think may be more popular than Donald Trump

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President Donald Trump had a difficult Friday while on vacation at Trump National Golf Club Bedminster in New Jersey.

White House chief of staff Mark Meadows was unable to reach a deal on the stimulus package.

So Trump lied on Twitter about the position of Democrats. But that did nothing to change the dynamics of the negotiations.

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WATCH: ‘Incredible tornado’ caught on tape by storm chaser

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Shocking video was posted to Twitter on Friday by a storm chaser in Canada.

"A tornado has touched down in southwestern Manitoba near Virden," the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation reports. "The funnel cloud was documented and posted to social media by several people in the area, including storm chaser Aaron Jayjack, who shot video of himself standing in front of the twister as it touched down."

Authorities warned golf ball-sized hail was likely.

"This is a dangerous and potentially life-threatening situation," the government warned. "Take cover immediately, if threatening weather approaches. If you hear a roaring sound or see a funnel cloud, swirling debris near the ground, flying debris, or any threatening weather approaching, take shelter immediately."

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2020 Election

Trump campaign thought their ‘huge news’ on pre-existing conditions had Democrats cornered — but it backfired spectacularly

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During a bizarre Friday evening press conference at his private golf club in New Jersey, President Donald Trump vowed to protect Americans with pre-existing conditions.

https://twitter.com/WhiteHouse/status/1291900469325987842

Of course, Trump does not need an executive order to accomplish such a goal, as it is already federal law in the Affordable Care Act, that was passed a decade ago by congressional Democrats and then-President Barack Obama.

Trump campaign advisors soon took to Twitter to praise Trump's promise as "huge news."

"Huge news just now - [Trump] announces upcoming EO to cover pre-existing conditions. Big, big, big news," campaign senior advisor Jason Miller tweeted.

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