Tennessee Democratic Party chair Mary Mancini released the following statement in response to Governor Lee’s quote in the Tennesseean article

“The role of government is to protect our freedom and keep us safe. It’s why we pay taxes and every elected representative should know at least that much prior to running for office. Outrageously, it’s only now dawning on Governor Lee who said today that this pandemic and global health crisis will give him the experience “‘to think about it and go, ‘You know, how much should government be involved?’” Not only should Governor Lee have had the answer to that question eight weeks ago, he should have had that answer prior to launching his campaign for the office responsible for our state’s response to a global pandemic, public health crisis, and economic freefall. Ninety four Tennesseans are dead, over five thousand are sick, and hundreds of thousands are out of work and Bill Lee is learning on the job. This is frightening. Now is not the time to figure out on the fly how much government should be involved in saving lives. Now is the time for him to step up and lead, like the governors of Kentucky, Michigan and New York, with the full force and weight of both the state and federal government.” – Mary Mancini, TNDP Chair