Florida Sen. Marco Rubio on Monday tweeted a general request that everyone stop sharing misinformation about the possible use of martial law to maintain stability in this ongoing crisis.
“Please stop spreading stupid rumors about marshall law. COMPLETELY FALSE. We will continue to see closings & restrictions on hours of non-essential businesses in certain cities & states. But that is NOT marshall law,” Rubio wrote.
Rubio’s plea certainly isn’t aided by other politicians who float the words ‘martial law’ before the public so easily.
California Gov. Gavin Newsom (D) said Tuesday that the state is prepared for the possibility of declaring martial law in an effort to combat the spread of the Chinese coronavirus.
“[W]e have the ability to do martial law … if we feel the necessity,” Newsom said during a press conference on California’s ongoing response to the deadly illness. In what would be an extraordinary measure, martial law is the suspension of ordinary law and the imposition of direct military control of a population. The governor has already placed the California National Guard on alert for humanitarian duties, including food distribution and public safety activities.
California, which approved $1.1 billion in emergency funding on Monday, may exceed the state’s roughly $21 billion in reserves, warned Newsom. “The magnitude of this moment may exceed those reserves,” he said.
Of course, the power to call up the National Guard remains with the states, which will most likely all that will be needed. The Trump administration has already said that they wish to send Americans money immediately, quelling any notion that an economic collapse is on the horizon.
Please stop spreading stupid rumors about marshall law.
We will continue to see closings & restrictions on hours of non-essential businesses in certain cities & states. But that is NOT marshall law.
— Marco Rubio (@marcorubio) March 16, 2020
Image: Gage Skidmore