– Representative Daryl Metcalfe (R-Butler) sent the following open letter urging Gov. Tom Wolf to rescind his unconstitutional and overreaching COVID-19 dictates:
“Pennsylvania was highlighted in the national news this week for hundreds of our citizens being lined up in their cars while waiting for food from the Greater Pittsburgh Food Bank. The COVID-19 virus, the social distancing response and the natural reaction of our citizens to minimize their exposure has created economic problems for our state and nation.
“Your unconstitutional dictates and overreach into our lives and the marketplace has caused immeasurable harm and hardship for far more Pennsylvanians than the virus!
“Incompetence and disregard for your fellow man was on full display when you shut down the interstate highways’ and Turnpike’s rest areas and restrooms.
“How did you reach such a damaging counterintuitive decision to hinder those supplying essential items at our most critical time of need? Reopening those basic services for America’s truckers and those who still need to travel was restoration of human decency in those locations.
“Your demeaning attempt to classify jobs as ‘essential’ or ‘non-life-sustaining,’ once again revealed a lack of concern and respect for the citizens you were elected to serve. All jobs are life-sustaining for the individual who works so he or she can put food on their table and keep a roof over their head.
“The after-hours order you gave on Thursday, March 19, 2020 to close all ‘non-life-sustaining businesses’ was unconstitutional and once again revealed your lack of care for humanity. Your order created confusion and uncertainty for employers and employees.
“Then you backtracked and created a waiver program that put bureaucrats in control of deciding who can provide for their families and who cannot! The waiver process has proven to be arbitrary, secretive and slow. In true form, like a page from Animal Farm, your connected family business associates were reported to have been granted a waiver while thousands of other businesses floundered in a sea of despair that you created.
“Your use of law enforcement to intimidate law-abiding citizens into accepting your unconstitutional dictate to close their business is offensive and an inappropriate use of our men and women in blue. Law enforcement resources during this time must be directed at the criminal element who are still preying on our citizens, not at the innocent who are trying to put food on their tables.
“Your divisive fear mongering tactics encouraging neighbors to turn in neighbors for non-compliance with your unconstitutional orders should not happen in the land of the free and home of the brave!
“Finally, your ‘Stay-at-Home Orders’ are raising concerns in our communities of ‘show me your documents’ requests. You were not elected to be our master or dictator but a servant leader in the executive branch. You have no authority to imprison any citizen in their home.
“The challenge that we face as a state and a nation calls for leadership exercised with common decency, respect for individuals and for their rights as affirmed in the constitutions of our state and nation. You have failed in all three!
“I call on you to rescind your dictates that have caused immeasurable harm to millions of people in our state.
“Our citizens must have the hope of an end in sight. Our citizens must have hope of being able to earn the money they need to put bread on their tables while we wrestle through the economic impact of the virus.
“Our citizens should be encouraged, not ordered, to practice social distancing and other good health practices to avoid exposure and spreading of the virus. The citizens of Pennsylvania must be able to get back to work to survive!”
Representative Daryl Metcalfe
Pennsylvania House of Representatives
Media Contact: Ty McCauslin