Sioux Falls Mayor TenHaken Talks COVID-19 With CNN Wolf Blitzer
Sioux Falls Mayor Paul TenHaken appeared on CNN's Wolf Blitzer program on Tuesday. The following is the transcript of the conversation as they discussed the current COVID-19 outbreak situation in the city.
BLITZER: Well, as I keep saying, you know, Mayor, these are life and death decisions for the folks in your city, life and death decisions for the folks in your state. You see how quickly something like this coronavirus can explode. And I just pointed up, there were 38 deaths, 38 confirmed deaths here in the United States two months ago on March 12th, today, May 12th, there are what, more than 81,000 confirmed deaths. You see how that can explode. And it's the source I assume a great worry to you?
TENHAKEN: Yes, of course. I mean, the number one thing that keeps me up at night on this whole response is, are we doing enough to keep people safe, and that means protecting them from coronavirus. That also means protecting people from the mental health ramifications, the unemployment ramifications, the small business closure ramifications. So you have the public health pandemic and then you have the ancillary pandemic that results, you know, from the economy and the other things that are happening.
So I'd heard of last week a small business owner in our city took his own life, just didn't see the other side of this. And so, you wonder, OK, did we do too much that we caused that and those are weighty things to have to think about when you're making a decision. A lot of times we talk about one seemingly good decision that can have three or four spin-off decisions that you never anticipated.
BLITZER: Yes, these are really, really critically important life and death decisions. Mayor, good luck to you, good luck to everybody in your great state and your wonderful city of Sioux Falls. I appreciate your joining us.
TENHAKEN: Thank you, Wolf.