LANSING, Mich. — Wednesday around noon, numerous cars caused traffic jams near the capitol building in Lansing as people took part in a protest against Gov. Gretchen Whitmer's recent executive orders.
The main order people are taking issue with is the extension of the stay at home order and what businesses are considered essential and non-essential. On Thursday, April 9, Whitmer extended that order through the end of the month and also introduced new restrictions on garden centers and stores selling furniture and paint.
"Come prepared for a traffic jam in Lansing! We WANT gridlock," the group explains on Facebook.
As of today over 4,600 people have said they are going and 17,000 are interested. The Facebook event lists its organizers as the Michigan Conservative Coalition and the Michigan Freedom Fund.
Gov. Whitmer's spoke about the rally in a press conference Wednesday afternoon.
"I understand the frustration that people are feeling. I'm frustrated too. None of us wants to be here in this moment but we are and we have to do the best that we can," she said.
The rally, did as it was planned, and caused gridlock, thousands attended and traffic was backed up for hours. Some protesters left their cars and marched on the capitol steps.
Whitmer said she supported the people's right to protest but wants people to still adhere by the CDC guidelines to social distancing.
"I support your right to free speech, and I respect your opinions," said Whitmer.
"I just urge you don't put yourself at risk. And don't put others at risk either."
PHOTOS: Protest held on Gov. Whitmer's decision to extend the stay at home order
MORE COVID-19 COVERAGE:
- Coronavirus updates, April 15: COVID-19 testing criteria expanded, protesters cause gridlock in Lansing
- Sleeping Bear Dunes will be closed until further notice
- Michigan Republican representatives express concerns about stay at home order in letter
- Gov. Gretchen Whitmer facing lawsuit over stay at home order
- Whitmer thanks Amway, DeVos family for PPE donations
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