Protesters against 'stay at home' order begin massing at Governor's Residence

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Protesters, many with signs and flags, have begun gathering in the area outside the Governor's Residence in St. Paul Thursday ahead of another protest planned Friday against the 'stay at home' order.

The protesters are urging Gov. Tim Walz to reopen the state and businesses amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

Protesters with Live Free MN waved signs saying "land of the free" and "freedom over fear" at cars as they passed by the residence on Summit Avenue.

A Facebook group planning the protest Friday called "Liberate Minnesota" says, "Thousands of lives are being destroyed right now. It is not the governor's place to restrict free movement of Minnesota citizens! Gov. Walz you work for the citizens of this state! Minnesota's economy must be reopened for business or destroying the livelihoods of hundreds of thousands of Minnesota citizens and their families may result if we don't act quickly!"

The group goes on to mention President Donald Trump's remarks saying the cure must not be worse than the disease.

Many protesters weren't wearing masks or practicing social distancing guidelines recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

When asked about the protesters during the daily COVID-19 update briefing, Minnesota Department of Health Commissioner Jan Malcolm said that while everyone wants to return to work and engage in the community, health officials do not want to see a rapid spread of the disease in the workplace. They are trying to make plans to feasibly return to activities and have a chance to shore up health care.