March Coronavirus Update: Republican Attorneys General Lead in the Fight Against COVID-19

Kelly LacoNews

March 2020 Coronavirus Update 

Republican attorneys general (AGs) are leading in the fight against the coronavirus crisis. Unlike their Democrat counterparts who continue to play politics, Republican AGs are dedicating their time to supporting consumers and keeping small businesses open. The AGs are working hard day in and day out protecting American consumers from price gouging, identifying and dismantling disaster scams, and assisting the Trump Administration by disseminating accurate information to the public.

Read the April 2020 coronavirus update here

Washington Times: Louisiana Attorney General Jeff Landry: ‘Made in America’ Solutions will Defeat COVID-19 and Stop China’s Economic Invasion. COVID-19 is a Category 5 storm affecting the entire nation. As someone who has endured numerous natural disasters in Louisiana, our survival and recovery rely upon our continued teamwork and responsiveness. We must have government, private industry, and our citizens working together to take on this coronavirus. 

The Hill: States see surge of scams, price-gouging tied to pandemic. “We should, when we catch some of these people, lock them up for the entire rest of their lives. This is no joke. This is the kind of thing that endangers people more,” Louisiana Attorney General Jeff Landry said. 

“It’s unfortunate that we find ourselves in this circumstance. It’s unfortunate that some people try to take advantage of this circumstance,” said Kentucky Attorney General Daniel Cameron.

The Daily Caller Podcast: Louisiana’s Attorney General On The State’s Coronavirus Preparedness. “Everyone is up to making sure that we fight this invisible enemy and that we win,”said Louisiana Attorney General Jeff Landry. 

Fox News: Florida AG calls quarantine order directed at New York-area travelers ‘decisive action’ to keep state safe. “We know that we’re seeing the coronavirus really taking hold in the New York area. And Governor DeSantis has taken decisive action to make sure he keeps Floridians safe,” Attorney General Ashley Moody told host Neil Cavuto. 

Republican AGs Protect Americans While Democrats Play Politics

RAGA Chairman Louisiana Attorney General Jeff Landry and RAGA Vice Chairman Georgia Attorney General Chris Carr issued strong statements rebuking liberal Democrat candidate for President Joe Biden for playing politics in the middle of the coronavirus pandemic by sending a letter on the unconstitutional  Affordable Care Act to the President and AG offices. Read the full release here.

Indiana Attorney General Curtis Hill responded to former Vice President Biden’s demand that Republican AGs drop their legal challenge to the Affordable Care Act. In the letter, AG Hill said, “I believe there are better and more worthwhile ways for you to serve the nation during these trying times than seeking to exploit the deadly COVID-19 pandemic for your own personal political gain.” Read the entire letter here.

Yahoo Finance: Republican Attorneys General push forward with lawsuit to dismantle Obamacare despite coronavirus. “It’s unfortunate that a former Vice President would choose to play petty politics during a global crisis,” Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton wrote. “Nevertheless, the facts are that Obamacare resulted in higher costs, fewer choices and a power imbalance between the people and their government. Even the mandate at its core was declared unconstitutional by a federal district court and affirmed by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit.”

Republican AGs Team Up with Football Coaches to Spread Information

Georgia Attorney General Chris Carr teamed up with Georgia football legend Herschel Walker to create a Public Service Announcement in order to raise awareness about scams and spread information on how to stop the spread of the virus. Watch the full video here.

Republican AGs Work Closely with the Trump Administration

The Republican attorneys general support President Trump and the entire Administration in the fight to stop price gouging and hoarding during the COVID-19 crisis. The AGs amplified support of the Executive Order signed by President Trump, which takes action to prevent the hoarding and price gouging of critical supplies needed to combat the coronavirus. Read the White House official announcement here.

Montana Attorney General Tim Fox was tapped by U.S. Attorney General Bill Barr to help coordinate the state and federal response to fraud and support the President’s new Executive Order. Read more here.

Louisiana Attorney General Jeff Landry announced a major donation by Amneal Pharmaceuticals of 400,000 hydroxychloroquine sulfate tablets to the State of Louisiana in order to help during the Coronavirus crisis. “I wish to remind everyone of the importance of social distancing guidelines issued by the President and state officials,” said Attorney General Jeff Landry. “Amneal’s donation is one step toward trying to find treatments and cures for this epidemic. Right now, there are no silver bullets. We must remain vigilant against the spread of this virus.”

Fox Business: Chloroquine donations used in Louisiana coronavirus treatment trial. “This is not a silver bullet, this is not a magic solution, but right now we are in a crisis mode and we need to be able to actually do live experiments as our medical providers see fit in order to try and stem this pandemic,” said Attorney General Jeff Landry.

West Virginia Attorney General Patrick Morrisey has consistently put on press conferences, virtual meetings, and Facebook Live events to communicate accurate information from the Administration directly to the people of West Virginia and warn of scams.

Utah Attorney General Sean Reyes participated in a conference call with the Surgeon General of the United States, Jerome Adams, to discuss actions to keep Americans safe in response to the COVID-19 crisis. Read more here.

Alaska Attorney General Kevin Clarkson urged Alaskans to follow White House guidelines and stay at home to stop the spread of the virus. Read more here.

Idaho Attorney General Lawrence Wasden helped disseminate accurate information from official Administration social media accounts, including the Department of Homeland Security about CDC guidelines and how to prevent spreading false information.

Republican AGs Create Important Public-Private Partnerships

Alabama Attorney General Steve Marshall announced a partnership with Facebook to combat unconscionable online price gouging of Alabamians during the current pandemic.

Kentucky Attorney General Daniel Cameron announced a partnership with Amazon to combat price gouging and issued subpoenas to six third-party sellers in Kentucky who used Amazon’s online platform to engage in suspected price gouging during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Missouri Attorney General Eric Schmitt teamed up with Facebook, Amazon, and other third party sales platforms to fight price gouging and scams in Missouri.

Oklahoma Attorney General Mike Hunter and U.S. Attorney Tim Downing announced a state-federal partnership that will combine resources and information to investigate and prosecute con artists attempting to defraud Oklahomans during the coronavirus crisis.

Georgia Attorney General Chris Carr is stepping up the fight to rid the marketplace of price gougers and scammers by partnering with members of the Georgia and national business communities, including the following entities: Amazon, eBay, Walmart, Facebook, Chevron, Publix, the Georgia Association of Convenience Stores, the Georgia Retailers, the Georgia Food Industry Association and the Better Business Bureau.

Republican AGs Provide Legal Opinions and Guidance During the Crisis

Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton issued a legal opinion regarding the sales of firearms in Texas municipalities and counties. The opinion concludes that municipal and county authorities may not use emergency powers to regulate or restrict the sale of firearms. Read more here.

South Carolina Attorney General Alan Wilson issued an opinion concluding a Governor’s executive order during a state of emergency preempts local government ordinances. Read more here.

Missouri Attorney General Eric Schmitt sent a letter to Missouri’s professional licensing boards and commissions asking those bodies to reconsider licensing regulations that may hinder certain individuals or industries, specifically healthcare professionals, as they combat or deal with COVID-19. Read the letter here.

Arizona Attorney General Mark Brnovich issued an informal opinion about how COVID-19 has affected procurement procedures that apply to school districts under Arizona law. Read the opinion here.

Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost sent a letter to abortion clinics ordering them to halt all nonessential medical services to preserve resources for the battle against COVID-19. Read more here.

New York Times: Texas and Ohio Include Abortion as Medical Procedures That Must Be Delayed. “Both states said they were trying to preserve extremely precious protective equipment for health care workers and to make space for a potential flood of coronavirus patients.”

Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton issued a legal advisory noting that health care professionals and facilities, including abortion providers, must immediately stop all medically unnecessary surgeries and procedures to preserve resources to fight COVID-19. AG Paxton also filed a brief in a United States District Court in Austin to enforce Governor Abbott’s Executive Order. Today, AG Paxton filed for immediate appellate review in the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit to enforce the Executive Order postponing any unnecessary medical procedures to preserve desperately needed medical supplies for the health professionals.

Washington Times: Texas to appeal ruling over abortions during COVID-19 pandemic. “I am deeply disappointed that the court ruled against the health and safety of Texans. My office is seeking prompt appellate review to ensure that medical professionals on the frontlines have the supplies and protective gear they desperately need. We will fight tirelessly against this politically-driven lawsuit to protect the health of Texans suffering from this COVID-19 crisis,” Attorney General Paxton said.

Louisiana Attorney General Jeff Landry called out anabortion clinic in Shreveport for ignoring the Louisiana Department of Health’s Notice suspending the performance of all elective medical procedures and surgeries in Louisiana. Read more here.

Kentucky Attorney General Daniel Cameron released a statement regarding Kentucky’s abortion providers continuing to perform abortions during the pandemic, urging them to cease elective procedures to protect patient health and slow the spread of Coronavirus. Read more here.

National Review: Kentucky AG Calls for Statewide Hold on Abortions Amid Coronavirus Pandemic. “Cameron released a statement after Planned Parenthood sued the state of Texas for deeming abortions a non-essential procedure, thus effectively halting abortions during the pandemic.”

Alabama Attorney General Steve Marshall addressed litigation filed against the State of Alabama by the ACLU to keep state abortion clinics open during the current state health emergency. Alabama also joined an amicus brief in support of Texas, and another in support of Ohio, both of which face similar lawsuits filed by pro-abortion activists.

Republican AGs Crack Down on Price Gouging

Arkansas Attorney General Rutledge launched a resource page for Arkansans to communicate the efforts her office is taking to stop price gouging and also allowing them a quick and easy way to report scams. Get more info here.

Fox 16: Coronavirus misinformation spreading faster than illness, Arkansas Attorney General issues scam warning. “It is important to remain vigilant when avoiding any contagious illness, but some misinformation surrounding Coronavirus is causing undue panic and fraudsters are taking advantage of that fear,” Arkansas Attorney General Leslie Rutledge said. “Like any scam, don’t buy into this hysteria and get your facts from the experts.”

Florida Attorney General Ashley Moody has a price gouging fact sheet available online, as well as a smartphone app that allows consumers to report instances of price gouging. More information available on the hotline can be found here. AG Moody also released a helpful Public Service Announcement on price gouging.

Tennessee Attorney General Herbert Slatery ordered two brothers in his state to stop buying and selling medical goods and products due to potential price gouging activities amid the coronavirus pandemic. Read more here.

Missouri Attorney General Eric Schmitt announced a new online form for consumers to report price gouging. Click here to view the complaint form.

Nebraska Attorney General Doug Peterson issued guidance and a warning to Nebraskans to avoid potential scams related to coronavirus. Read more here.

Republican AGs Provide Consumer Resources

Mississippi Attorney General Lynn Fitch is circulating information from the Mississippi State Department of Health about where folks can get tested for coronavirus throughout the state. Read more here.

Indiana Attorney General Curtis Hill is helping consumers figure out what to do if their travel plans have been affected by coronavirus-related restrictions. AG Hill’s lists of tips can be viewed here.

Nebraska Attorney General Doug Peterson is encouraging Nebraskans to visit his “Protect the Good Life” consumer protection website, which contains educational resources for consumers about charitable scams, identity theft, and data breach, as well as the ability to report a scam. You can view “Protect the Good Life” here.

Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost has a charitable registration database and is encouraging citizens to check the database before giving money to any organization that claims to be helping in the fight against COVID-19.

Kansas Attorney General Derek Schmidt launched a website page dedicated to providing COVID-19 information and resources.

South Dakota Attorney General Jason Ravnsborg provides regular updates on coronavirus through social media channels.