(CNN) — Two billboards near the Indiana border suggest travelers may want to think twice before visiting Michigan while the state’s coronavirus policies are in place.
As vehicles leave Indiana, they encounter an electronic sign that reads: “Now Entering Michigan: Really? You’re sure about this?”
Likewise, southbound travelers are greeted with a sign as they cross into Indiana that reads: “The Great State of Indiana Welcomes Michiganders To A Free-To-Roam State. We Thank You for the Revenue!”
But the man behind the billboards said they are actually meant to support Michiganders during their quarantine, not poke fun at the restrictions in place.
“It’s not politically motivated at all,” Steve Swick, president and owner of the Swick Broadcasting Company which purchased the billboards, told CNN.
“I did it just to do it,” Swick told CNN affiliate WOOD. “We hear and see all the frustrations of Michiganders that are going through. There was nothing political about it.”
Michigan has been on lockdown since March, and Gov. Gretchen Whitmer has extended the stay-at-home order several times. It’s now in effect until at least June 12.
Whitmer, a Democrat, has faced backlash regarding her closure orders. Last month, protesters carrying firearms descended on Michigan’s Capitol to pressure the governor to issue more relaxed measures.
President Donald Trump has also attacked Whitmer, a first-term governor, in personal terms over her criticism of his handling of the coronavirus pandemic.
Swick said that he wants the billboards to get people “thinking.” He wants those who see it to know that the state of Indiana is open for their business.
So far, he said he feels that the message has been successful — though it’s unclear how long he will keep the billboards up.
“Maybe we’ll tweak something based on the government in Michigan, and in Indiana for that matter,” he said.
On Friday, Michigan opened the Upper Peninsula and the northern part of the state, with social distancing and other safety measures in place.
The state currently has over 55,611 cases of coronavirus, according to Johns Hopkins University data, and more than 5,334 deaths.
Indiana has 32,437 confirmed cases of the virus, and 2,030 deaths, according to Johns Hopkins University.
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