Las Vegas Mayor Offers City As Social Distancing ‘Control Group’ In Call To Reopen Businesses

Sanjana Karanth
·2-min read

Las Vegas Mayor Carolyn Goodman said Wednesday that she wants to reopen businesses like hotels and casinos, volunteering her city and the people in it as a “control group” to see if social distancing actually works to slow the spread of the coronavirus.

In a shocking interview with CNN’s Anderson Cooper, Goodman also argued there have been viruses in Vegas “for years,” and said she would not provide social distancing guidelines on how to safely reopen the economy.

“I get the financial losses people are suffering, which is awful, but you’re encouraging, I mean, hundreds of thousands of people coming there in casinos, smoking, drinking, touching slot machines, breathing circulated air ― and then returning home to states around America and countries around the world,” Cooper said. “Doesn’t that sound like a virus petri dish?”

Goodman responded no, calling Cooper an “alarmist.” She also said that while she believes everyone should practice social distancing in businesses, she does not believe it’s her responsibility as mayor to create a plan to make sure businesses reopen safely.

“I am not a private owner, that’s the competition in this country. The free enterprise and to be able to make sure that what you offer the public meets the needs of the public,” Goodman said. “Right now, we’re in a crisis health-wise, and so for a restaurant to be open or a small boutique to be open, they better figure it out. That’s their job. That’s not the mayor’s job.”

Nevada has more than 3,900 confirmed coronavirus cases and 163 deaths as of Wednesday, 141 of which come from Clark County, which includes the city of...

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