She Pulled a Cuomo: Report Shows Gretchen Whitmer Hid Thousands of COVID Fatalities, Deaths Underreported by 30%


Disgraced former New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo received intense criticism for ordering his state’s nursing homes to accept COVID-19 patients as the pandemic started taking off, then allegedly lying about the number of COVID-19 deaths in his state’s nursing home.

He may not have been the only Democratic governor to do so.

According to Just the News, Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer was accused of undercounting nursing home deaths in new report.

The report came from the state’s auditor general, Doug Ringler, and identified 8,061 COVID related deaths in long-term care facilities.

This was an increase of over 2,000 deaths compared Michigan Department of Health and Human Services’ 5,675 self-reported deaths as of July 2, 2021.

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While this actually represents an undercounting of 42 percent, the report spent “several pages explaining why the state’s responsibility for undercounting was 30%.”

In a written response to the probe addressed to Ringer, MDHHS Director Elizabeth Hertel said the conclusions were “misleading,” adding that almost half of the undercounting was due to incorrect reporting by facilities.

The MDHHS disagreed with 1,511 of the 2,386 deaths added by the report on the grounds that it said they were determined using unreliable data.

“[W]e do not believe you have done a ‘proper accounting of all long-term care facility deaths’ as your letter suggests,” Hertel wrote to Ringer.

Do you think Whitmer's administration purposely undercounted COVID deaths in nursing homes?

However, the office of the auditor general maintained it had used reliable data and directly corroborated at least 85 percent of the 1,511 in question.

Like Cuomo, Whitmer ordered long-term care facilities to accept COVID-positive patients at the beginning of the pandemic, according to a Washington Examiner report from March 2021.

Like Cuomo, Whitmer faced heated public criticism for doing so.

For that reason, she would have a vested interest in undercounting the deaths caused by her own mistake.

Republican state Rep. Steven Johnson was the person who requested the office of the auditor general conduct an investigation into the state’s nursing home deaths. He told Detroit’s WXYZ-TV his goal was accountability.

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“These are long-term care facilities that were required under Gov. Whitmer’s policies to accept COVID positive patients, and because of that, our most vulnerable residents were put at risk,” Johnson said.

“That’s something that never should have happened and there needs to be accountability on this.”

Michigan Freedom Fund, an organization dedicated to fighting for conservative policies in the state, also issued a statement slamming Whitmer after the report.

“Gretchen Whitmer’s decision to import COVID-19 into nursing homes and long-term care facilities was unscientific, and it was deadly,” the organization said in a statement according to Just the News.

While no legal action has been taken, the controversy looks to be a factor for Whitmer’s public image ahead of her reelection campaign this year.

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Grant is a graduate of Virginia Tech with a bachelor’s degree in journalism. He has five years of writing experience with various outlets and enjoys covering politics and sports.
Grant is a graduate of Virginia Tech with a bachelor's degree in journalism. He has five years of writing experience with various outlets and enjoys covering politics and sports.