Even as many US states debate emerging out of lockdowns, Las Vegas Mayor Carolyn Goodman on Wednesday called the shutdowns “total insanity” and repeatedly called for the city’s businesses to reopen without any social distancing guidelines. During an interview with CNN, she openly advocated opening up casinos and hotels while refusing to answer host Anderson Cooper’s questions on how to do it safely.
During a 25-minute-long interview the mayor insisted that everything be opened, including casinos, restaurants and small businesses, and a return of conventions — failing to address any concerns.
The 81-year-old politically independent mayor said, “That’s up to them to figure out,” and “I am not a private owner,” when the news anchor tried to highlight the issue of casinos spreading the infection.
“I want everything back. We never closed down the United States. We’ve never closed down Nevada. We’ve never closed down Las Vegas because that’s our job. Entertainment capital of the world where everything is clean,” she argued.
One point in the interview, when Cooper tried to draw parallel with a restaurant setting in China and how one asymptomatic person caused others to get infected, she laughed and said, “This isn’t China, this is Las Vegas.”
As the news anchor pushed her further for answers, Goodman retorted, “You’re talking about the disease — I’m talking about life and living.” Cooper replied, “OK, that makes no sense.”
The interview only got weirder and the host at one point took off his glasses, rubbed his eyes, and took a deep breath to maintain his cool.
Watch the full interview here:
The video sparked a furore on Twitter with people saying the mayor was ignorant and reckless, while others lauded the journalist for not backing down.
— Jason (@JasonBSTL) April 22, 2020
Las Vegas Mayor Goodman has the right to hold crazy opinions. However, the first duty of government is to protect the lives of its citizens. Any elected official who doesn’t understand that duty needs to resign.#WednesdayThoughts https://t.co/eMD7Z7iIHU
— Ted Lieu (@tedlieu) April 22, 2020
Wow— the Mayor of Las Vegas Carolyn Goodman is a dangerous fool. Watch this and always remember how important your vote is. There are some really stupid people out there who can end your life. https://t.co/yqczHirtrI
— Judd Apatow (@JuddApatow) April 22, 2020
The latest evidence that politicians should not be making public health decisions. Let’s leave it to the scientists. https://t.co/vkSwPs7qEl
— Joe Lockhart (@joelockhart) April 22, 2020
the mayor of Las Vegas feels like if a White Zinfandel in a Starbucks cup was in charge of a city.
— Morgan Murphy (@morgan_murphy) April 22, 2020
“Wow, that’s really ignorant.”
That’s the correct response to pretty much anything Las Vegas Mayor Carolyn Goodman says.pic.twitter.com/CwPRFPrPBS
— Holly Figueroa O’Reilly (@AynRandPaulRyan) April 22, 2020
She sounded like the drunk at the end of the bar at 2am. Incoherent nonsense, said with gusto and braggadocio. In other words, so Trumpian.
— K.A. Cuordileone (@StableGeniusNo7) April 22, 2020
BRAVO to Anderson Cooper for exposing the selfish, ignorant stupidity of Las Vegas Mayor Goodman, who somehow thinks it’s OK to expose visitors and citizens to virtual petri dishes by reopening too early.
— BrooklynDad_Defiant! (@mmpadellan) April 22, 2020
Anderson Cooper has far more patience than I do. He is interviewing that MORON mayor of Las Vegas. She is completely ignorant and a total fool and people in Vegas will die because of her stupidity. Anderson should have cut this clown off
— American Veteran (@amvetsupport) April 22, 2020
Anderson Cooper asked the Mayor of Las Vegas Carolyn Goodman if she’ll be on the casino floors when they open. Her response: “No.. first of all I have a family!”pic.twitter.com/T1rBIBtqVh
— Matt 👀 (@Anxious_Matt) April 22, 2020
Wow, her logic is just stunningly bad. It’s like she is ignorant to all the death here in the U.S. and in Italy and other countries and wants to act like we should just act like business as usual. She’s gonna get a lot of people sick in Las Vegas, unfortunately.
— EE (@EEstaris) April 22, 2020
Las Vegas Mayor Carolyn Goodman on CNN laughing and smiling like coronavirus is a joke. She said she’s lived through many viruses – the reality Carolyn is that none of those viruses – except the 1918 pandemic – cause hundreds of thousands of deaths. One stupid ignorant woman.
— TheMessenger (@TheMessenger321) April 22, 2020
Earlier in March, while Nevada’s governor joined other US officials invoking extraordinary measures to reduce the spread of the coronavirus, the mayor of Las Vegas was pushing back against a shutdown of the casinos that power the city and the state economy.
After Goodman’s interview went viral, Governor of Nevada, Steve Sisolak told CNN, “I will not allow the citizens of Nevada, our Nevadans, to be used as a control group, as a placebo, whatever she wants to call it.” Talking about the reopening, he added, “We want to welcome everybody back to Las Vegas. We want to welcome them back to the lights on the Strip. But it’s not today and it’s not tomorrow.”
According to a report by Associated Press, Las Vegas City Councilman Brian Knudsen said Goodman “does not speak for all of us,” and reopening now “is reckless and completely contrary to the overwhelming consensus of medical experts.”
The casino workers’ Culinary Union, which represents about 60,000 bartenders, cooks, housekeepers and other employees, said Goodman’s remarks were “outrageous considering essential frontline workers have been dealing with the consequences of this crisis firsthand.”
with inputs from AP
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