Politico: ‘The Woman in Michigan’ Goes National

gretchen whitmer portrait

LANSING, Mich.—The phone rings once.

“Hello?”

It’s a man’s voice: gruff, impatient.

“Hi there,” the female caller says. “May I please speak with John?”

“Who’s this?”

“Gretchen Whitmer.”

A three-second pause.

“Governor Whitmer?”

“Yes, sir.”

“Oh ma’am,” John says, his tone apologetic. “Hi. How are you?”

It’s a loaded question. This particular call, one of dozens Whitmer will make on Monday, April 6, comes at a moment of relative calm for the governor who has become one of America’s most visible political leaders amid the Covid-19 pandemic. But the last few weeks have been madness. Since Michigan’s first cases were identified on March 11, Whitmer, having already declared a state of emergency, shut down schools and businesses, banned large gatherings, broadened unemployment benefits and ordered citizens to shelter-in-place.

 

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