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Governor Stirs the Pot on Virus, Gun-Waving Couple

Mike Parson says students who become ill at school will get over it
By Bob Cronin,  Newser Staff
Posted Jul 20, 2020 7:15 PM CDT

(Newser) – The governor of Missouri does not appear interested in whining about the coronavirus. Mike Parson, a Republican up for election, made that clear in discussing reopening schools during a radio interview Friday. "These kids have got to get back to school," Parson said. "They’re at the lowest risk possible. And if they do get COVID-19, which they will—and they will when they go to school—they’re not going to the hospitals. ... They're going to go home, and they’re going to get over it." Among those critical of Parson's comments, the Hill reports, was his probable opponent in November, state Auditor Nicole Galloway. "This is stunning ignorance … on how COVID-19 affects children," the Democrat tweeted. "He admitted that he’s okay with your kids (and your families) getting the deadly disease when he sends them back to school. Does he not realize multiple American kids have died after being infected?"

In the same interview, per the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, Parson said he'd take care of the couple that brandished guns at protesters passing by their house. Asked if he'd pardon Mark and Patricia McCloskey, Parson said, "By all means, I would, and I think that’s exactly what would happen." The governor added that he'd have to consider all the facts, but said, "I don't think they’re going to spend any time in jail." Parson already had discussed helping the couple with President Trump. The McCloskeys were hit with one count each of unlawful use of a weapon on Monday, per KMOV. "While we are fortunate this situation did not escalate into deadly force," the local prosecutor said, "this type of conduct is unacceptable in St. Louis." (The McCloskeys often are battling someone, a report said.)

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