Gov. Brian Kemp’s aggressive scheme to lift Georgia out of COVID-19 lockdown may cost many thousands of lives, according to models prepared by epidemiologists and computer scientists at Harvard and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in partnership with The Daily Beast.
The findings come as governors across the United States aim to restore economic activity following months of pandemic-related infections and over 50,000 deaths—a number widely understood to be an undercount. Meanwhile, over 26 million Americans have filed for unemployment benefits in recent weeks, a number that is itself a likely undercount of the economic toll.
Georgia’s Kemp has perhaps been the boldest of any governor about moving on, issuing a pair of executive orders allowing fitness centers, tattoo and massage parlors, bowling alleys, and hair salons to reopen last Friday with some mitigation measures. Other businesses, like restaurants and theaters, began