Minnesota governor: Shelter in place 'a possibility' but not happening yet

Minnesota Gov. Tim Walz says a shelter-in-place order is a “possibility”, but as of now it is “not the situation we believe we are at.” 

Walz shared those words on WCCO Radio Friday morning, tamping down speculation ahead of his afternoon press conference, where he reiterated the order was not needed at this time.

“We are looking at the data, we are trying to it as transparently as possible and as real-time out to you, making the best informed decisions that will have an impact on flattening the curve,” said Walz at the press conference.

The governor of California issued a “shelter in place” order Thursday night, requiring all 40 million people in the state to stay home except for essential business. That is the most significant lockdown seen so far in the United States.  

Some Minnesotans say they believe a similar order is needed here as well.

“I think it’s a necessity at this point,” said Ben Hamler, who was grocery shopping for the weekend. “I see more and more people not listening and heeding the warnings. People are just out and about. Like it’s going to take government intervention to get people to take it seriously.”

Friday confirmed cases in Minnesota jumped from 89 total cases to 115 total cases, but health officials stress it is an undercount because there is a shortage of test kits.

Walz's executive orders have come at a furious pace. One week ago, Walz announced the cancelation of all events with more than 250 people. On Sunday, he ordered schools to shut down and on Monday, he banned dine-in service at restaurants and ordered other entertainment, fitness and beauty businesses to close. 

On Thursday, Walz ordered hospitals to stop all elective surgeries and procedures, anything that can be delayed without risking a patient’s health. The order takes effect on Monday and could last weeks.