The List: Forecasting DeWine's future COVID-19 press conferences
During Gov. Mike DeWine’s press conference on Monday, he noted that the state had seen a notable spike in COVID-19 cases, particularly in the southeast around Cincinnati. He then announced that restrictions on visits to elder-care facilities would soon be eased, allowing outdoor visits to resume. This continues an established pattern in which Ohio carries on in its relentless quest to open for business even as the coronavirus expands its grip on the state. With that in mind, we thought we’d take a crack at predicting future DeWine pressers.
Tuesday, July 7
COVID update: Cases have increased to more than 1,000 per day, and we’ve seen a significant rise in hospitalizations and ICU admissions.
Government response: DeWine said that beginning on Friday all Short North patios are required to operate at 100 percent capacity. The state has also established open-mouth kissing as Ohio’s official public greeting, effective immediately.
Monday, July 27
COVID update: With more than 2,000 new cases appearing per day, hospital ICU beds are now in perilously short supply
Government response: DeWine launches a “Have You Hugged an Elder” campaign and passes legislation requiring each citizen to eat at least three restaurant dine-in meals per week. While the governor recommends all citizens wear a mask in public to curtail spread, he again refrains from making it a requirement. Also, preliminary plans are put in place to resume arena concerts within the week.
Friday, Aug. 7
COVID update: With hospital ICU beds at 100 percent capacity, convention centers and arenas have been converted into treatment centers statewide.
Government response: Arena concerts will continue to operate as planned, with hospital beds placed against the walls of the concourse during ticketed events.
Monday, Aug. 24
COVID update: With arenas and convention centers maxed out, those afflicted are being asked to self-hospitalize at home. The death rate is also increasing to an alarming degree.
Government response: Restrictions on tubing have been relaxed, and the long-gone large gathering ban has now been replaced with a large gathering minimum, mandating that all social gatherings consist of at least 50 people. While the governor recommends attendees wear a mask, one is not required.
Tuesday, Sept. 8
COVID update: With cases still increasing, health experts now believe that nearly 70 percent of the state’s population has contracted the coronavirus, though data is sketchy, as more than 80 percent of the government has been struck with the disease.
Government response: Indoor malls are now required to run at 100 percent capacity and outdoor malls are required to be converted to indoor malls, which must then also operate at 100 percent capacity. Takeout dining has also now been banned, and all meals must be eaten inside restaurants or from the new public feeding troughs introduced at grocery stores. Masks are not required while dining from the troughs.
Thursday, Oct. 15
COVID update: With more than 90 percent of the population infected, we’re starting to see a welcome decrease in new cases, though the death rate has continued its rise, taxing even the newly purchased refrigeration trucks.
Government response: Any child born in the second half of October must take the name “Retail,” regardless of gender. Daycares also must now operate at 120 percent capacity, in addition to instituting daily fecal finger painting, up from the previous weekly requirement.
Monday, Dec. 21
COVID update: With the virus now largely burned out and the streets strewn with the dead, a solar burst has signaled a collapsing sun, which will scorch and evaporate any survivors not pre-selected to populate the state’s newly revealed underground lair.
Government response: All tanning salons can now run unlimited hours, though the governor recommends all tanners wear a mask. (Mask not required.)