The chairwoman of the Minnesota Republican Party is under fire after describing the Minneapolis Parks Board's decision to close beaches and waterparks for the summer as "extreme communist control."
Jennifer Carnahan made the comment on Twitter Friday morning, taking exception by the decision that was announced Thursday evening that Minneapolis' outdoor aquatic facilities will be closed for the entire summer in response to the coronavirus pandemic.
It comes after a week that has seen Gov. Tim Walz express concern over large crowds that continue to gather at the city's lakes despite his "Stay at Home" order to slow the spread of COVID-19.
"Was it necessary for Minneapolis to close the beaches for the summer in early Apr?" Carnahan tweeted. "Much can unfold, change & transpire between now/then. The Democrats have turned Coronavirus into an excuse for extreme communist control. Wake up people!"
The tweet from Carnahan, who lives in St. Louis Park and is married to 1st District Rep. Jim Hagedorn, was met with hundreds of responses.
By 12:50 p.m., her tweet had been shared 38 times and "liked" 140 times, but received more than 1,000 responses, which is known on Twitter as "getting ratioed."
It soon attracted the attention of the Minnesota DFL chairman Ken Martin, who said her comment about "extreme communist control" was "as ignorant as it is dangerous" and has the potential to undermine social distancing guidelines.
"Giving up swimming in our beautiful Minneapolis beaches this summer is the least we can do to protect the lives of Minnesotans and prevent this scourge from spreading even further," he said.
"Thousands of people are dying and will die because of the cavalier attitude of people who are putting their own privilege ahead of our community. I sincerely hope this outbreak comes to a swift end. However, until it does, it is vital that we adhere to strict social distancing guidelines in order to protect ours."
Despite calls for nationwide social distancing, there have been numerous examples in recent weeks of large crowds continuing to congregate despite the warnings from health experts.
This has been particularly noted in Florida, where some counties have left beaches open to the public despite the growing spread in the southern state.
*It should be noted that communism is often defined by public control of all property. Since the Minneapolis Parks a