With hospitalization numbers continuing a three-week rise, Governor Hutchinson has added a 1:30 p.m. Capitol news conference Thursday to his weekly schedule.

Could something more than lip service be in the offing for the worsening COVID-19 crisis in Arkansas?

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Hospital numbers today, with yesterday in parenthesis:

Hospitalized 1,064 (1,025); ICU, 386 (387), and patients on ventilators 209 (205).

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And here are more numbers:

New cases in the last 24 hours: 1,703

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Active cases: 15,801.

Deaths: 12 more, to 6,099

Vaccinations: Almost 11,000. Maybe people are beginning to sense the urgency.

So cases are rising. Deaths are rising. Hospitals are full. Parents and teachers are nervous. Sheriffs are in revolt and speaking up for school kids, even if legislators are not.

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The governor likes the increase in shots in releasing the summary:

 

But then there’s 30 Percent Trent:

A few points for Gomer Garner: Maybe the laws took effect today; maybe not. Drafting anomalies suggest otherwise both as to effective date and whether some laws invalidated earlier laws.

More relevant: Arkansas has not had a “vaccination passport.”. The governor’s mask “mandate” was rarely enforced and was lifted at the end of March and has been increasingly ignored since. 7-day rolling average of new cases March 31 — 177. Seven-day average now — 1,574.

As Gomer might say: Gooolllleee!