Iowa has chosen not to be part of a coalition of states formed to address the spreading coronavirus across the region.
Today, Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker announced Illinois will partner with Michigan, Ohio, Wisconsin, Minnesota, Indiana and Kentucky to work together to coordinate how to reopen the Midwestern economy.
Despite bordering three of those states, Iowa wasn’t included. Nebraska, the Dakotas and Missouri, also members of the region, were also left out.
According to Mark Maxwell: “Governors of Iowa, Missouri, North Dakota and South Dakota declined to join this regional pact between Midwest governors to coordinate when and how to re-open sectors of the economy, according to multiple sources familiar with the discussions.”
Reynolds said she’ll continue to participate in conversation with the other governors, despite not being part of the partnership.
“@IAGovernor @KimReynoldsIA will continue to participate in conversations with nearby governors as we prepare to open the state back up in the coming weeks,” Pat Garrett, the Governor’s communications director, said via email. #iapolitics #iagov
— O. Kay Henderson (@okayhenderson) April 16, 2020
Gov. Kim Reynolds has had conversations with the governors of other states, though.
When asked at press conference, she said, “We’ve had conversations with the North Dakota governor, South Dakota governor, we’ve talked to the Wyoming governor, I’ve talked to Pete Ricketts, [Nebraska] Gov. Ricketts, we talk probably at least once a week if not more.” She also mentioned Missouri and Illinois.
She didn’t mention Minnesota or Wisconsin then.
The two groups have largely taken different approaches to handling the coronavirus.
Iowa, Nebraska, North Dakota and South Dakota still haven’t issued stay-at-home orders for their states, while the others, including Missouri, have.
A press release from all of the governors said: “Here in the Midwest, we are bound by our commitment to our people and the community. We recognize that our economies are all reliant on each other, and we must work together to safely reopen them so hardworking people can get back to work and businesses can get back on their feet.”
Regional partnerships are becoming more common to discuss when to reopen economies or relax strict guidelines about staying home to prevent the spread of coronavirus.
Those include Washington, Oregon and California on the West Coast and New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, Pennsylvania, Delaware, Rhode Island and Massachusetts in the Northeast.
by Nikoel Hytrek