Metro East Sun

Metro East Sun

Tuesday, March 31, 2020

Babcock says doing nothing about COVID-19 is 'not an option,' but 'doing too much can also have major consequences'


By Glenn Minnis | Mar 26, 2020

Former House candidate Mike Babcock (R-Bethalto) | Facebook

Former House candidate Mike Babcock (R-Bethalto) senses the dangers in trying to navigate all the obstacles brought on by the coronavirus crisis.

“The truth is doing nothing at all is not an option, but at the same time doing too much can also have major consequences,” Babcock told the Metro East Sun. “I understand (the) situation and can understand the fear of people. I think people need to be cautious and take care of themselves. Everything always starts at home.”

At the same time, Babcock admits he’s heard all the ramblings about more people growing concerned about what they see as government overreach and some lawmakers looking to take advantage of the situation in advancing a political agenda they’ve long sought to put forward.

In Champaign, a city ordinance has been enacted that allows the city council the power to do everything from limit gun sales to ration utilities and seize private property. The newly approved legislation also gives leaders the power to impose emergency curfews, bar residents from public buildings and shutter businesses over the next 28 days.

“I’m more of a freedom-type person and for individual rights,” Babcock said. “I think taking steps that restrict people’s rights in terms of them being about to leave their house can have effects that truly worry me.”

While Champaign city attorney Fred Stavins stressed that no added actions are currently being called for and that the policies have actually been part of the city code for more than a decade, Babcock has vowed to keep close watch. 

“I think states like Illinois that have major populations face even bigger problems because of all the people,” he said. “As a government official, I’m just imploring everyone to proceed with caution and with consideration for all our concerns as best they can.”

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