Colorado Governor Jared Polis told CNBC that his state "really needs the federal government to move forward on the health side and on the business side" as the coronavirus pandemic enters a devastating new phase.
"We're trying to do this as a state. We've got $ 375 one-time unemployment insurance," Polis said. "But we know that the ability of the state has nothing to do with the ability of the federal government."
In October, Governor Polis signed the executive order to grant Coloradan's economic relief after saying it was unlikely that Congress would pass an aid package before the elections. In a Monday night interview on The News with Shepard Smith, Polis said it was not fair to issue a stay at home order, especially if the federal government does not offer the same benefits to Americans who are forced out of work like she had done earlier in the pandemic.
"People would like to do the right thing the last time they got $ 1,200, got a plus in unemployment, not here this time," Polis said. "It is very rational for someone to say that they would be taking a risk with the virus."
Colorado is facing pandemic highs in both hospitalizations and confirmed cases. Those needing treatment for Covid in a hospital rose 70% this month. There have been more than 2,200 Covid deaths in Colorado and 6% of all deaths from the pandemic were added in November. The Denver Post reported that 83% of the beds in the state's intensive care unit were used. Polis told host Shepard Smith that he is working to ensure his state's hospitals do not exceed capacity.
"We have worked hard to expand this capacity with our hospitals. We brought in additional staff with some alternative centers last week," said Polis. "For both Covid and non-Covid, we want to make sure that everyone who needs medical treatment can get it."
The United States topped more than 11 million cases on Sunday. John Hopkins reported that the last million cases were added in the last six days alone. According to the Covid Tracking Project, at least 26 states have hit an all-time high in hospital stays in the past week. In the United States, an average of more than 1,100 deaths are reported each day due to the coronavirus pandemic.