Scenes of protests across the country demanding states reopen the economy

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Hundreds of protesters gathered outside the Minnesota Governor’s Residence. Liberate Minnesota and other groups opposed to Gov. Tim Walz’s stay home orders protested outside the governor’s residence in St. Paul.

Glen Stubbe | Star Tribune | Getty Images

This past week saw a number of protests spring up around the country demanding the reopening of the U.S. economy as cases of coronavirus now surpass 700,000. 

As cases continue to rise, several states have extended stay-at-home measures and social distancing orders into May. This comes after another 5.245 million people filed for unemployment last week, bringing the total jobless claims to more than 22 million.

Protesters in Florida, North Carolina, Virginia, Michigan, Minnesota, Idaho and California – made up in large part of small-government groups, Trump supporters and gun rights advocates – gathered in cities and outside their state legislatures to demand the reopening of the economy.

President Trump seemingly tweeted his support for the protesters to “LIBERATE” Michigan, Minnesota and Virginia, whose Democratic governors are still grappling with a rise of coronavirus cases.

Several beaches in Florida have now reopened sparking fear that an increase in cases will be inevitable in a state with a large senior population. 

The following are scenes from several protests around the country as governors now struggle with striking a balance between protecting the public health and flattening the curve while making plans to reopen the economy.

Raleigh, North Carolina

Protesters from a grassroots organization called REOPEN NC demonstrate against the North Carolina coronavirus lockdown at a parking lot adjacent to the North Carolina State Legislature in Raleigh, North Carolina, on April 14, 2020.

Logan Cyrus | AFP | Getty Images

Lansing, Michigan

Dawn Perreca protest in Lansing, Mich., Wednesday, April 15, 2020. Flag-waving, honking protesters drove past the Michigan Capitol on Wednesday to show their displeasure with Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s orders to keep people at home and businesses locked during the new coronavirus COVID-19 outbreak.

Paul Sancya | AP

Richmond, Virginia

Protesters rally against stay-at-home orders related to the coronavirus pandemic at Capitol Square in Richmond, Virginia on April 16, 2020.

Ryan M. Kelly | AFP | Getty Images

Huntington Beach, California

Rose Riggio, from Los Angeles, joins a crowd of people gathered at the corner of Main Street and Walnut Avenue in Huntington Beach, CA, to protest coronavirus (COVID-19) closures on Friday, April 17, 2020.

Jeff Gritchen | Orange County Register | Getty Images

St. Paul, Minnesota

Several hundred protesters gather outside Minnesota Gov. Tim Walz’ official residence Friday, April 17, 2020, in St. Paul, Minn., to call on him to loosen stay-at-home restrictions imposed across the state because of the coronavirus.

Jim Mone | AP

Raleigh, North Carolina

Protesters from a grassroots organization called REOPEN NC demonstrate against the North Carolina coronavirus lockdown at a parking lot adjacent to the North Carolina State Legislature in Raleigh, North Carolina, on April 14, 2020.

Logan Cyrus | AFP | Getty Images

Richmond, Virginia

Protesters rally against stay-at-home orders related to the coronavirus pandemic outside Capitol Square in Richmond, Virginia on April 16, 2020.

Ryan M. Kelly | AFP | Getty Images

Lansing, Michigan

People take part in a protest for “Michiganders Against Excessive Quarantine” at the Michigan State Capitol in Lansing, Michigan on April 15, 2020.

Jeff Kowalsky | AFP | Getty Images

Orlando, Florida

Protesters demanding Florida businesses and government reopen, march in downtown Orlando, Fla., Friday, April 17, 2020. Small-government groups, supporters of President Donald Trump, anti-vaccine advocates, gun rights backers and supporters of right-wing causes have united behind a deep suspicion of efforts to shut down daily life to slow the spread of the coronavirus.

John Raoux | AP

Lansing, Michigan

People take part in a protest for “Michiganders Against Excessive Quarantine” at the Michigan State Capitol in Lansing, Michigan on April 15, 2020. –

Jeff Kowalsky| AFP via Getty Images

Boise, Idaho

Several hundred people attended a “Stand for Freedom” protest at the Capitol, protesting — and in violation of — Idaho Gov. Brad Little’s stand-home order during the coronavirus pandemic in Boise, Idaho, Friday, April 17, 2020.

Katherine Jones | Idaho Statesman | AP

Orlando, Florida

Protestors call for the end of coronavirus pandemic restrictions on Friday, April 17, 2020, at the Orange County Administration Building in Orlando, Fla.

Stephen M. Dowell | Orlando Sentinel | Getty Images

Huntington Beach, California

Kira Beattie , center, joins a crowd of people gathered at the corner of Main Street and Walnut Avenue in Huntington Beach, CA, to protest coronavirus (COVID-19) closures on Friday, April 17, 2020.

Jeff Gritchen | Orange County Register | Getty Images

Jacksonville, Florida

People are seen at the beach on April 17, 2020 in Jacksonville Beach, Florida. Jacksonville Mayor Lenny Curry announced Thursday that Duval County’s beaches would open at 5 p.m. but only for restricted hours and can only be used for swimming, running, surfing, walking, biking, fishing, and taking care of pets.

Sam Greenwood | Getty Images

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