Even Republicans who supported Kemp’s decision noted that the reopening comes with high stakes. The push by some Republican governors to roll out reopenings comes with the added gravity that the pandemic is not yet over, and people continue to get sick and die.

“I do think Kemp has solid data on the ground and the fact that he’s never shied from taking strong and controversial stances on things, so I take a little bit of comfort that he knows everyone is watching,” said Diane Lewis, the former chairwoman of the Floyd County Republicans. “And I think that probably bodes well for the likely outcome of this experiment.”

For one county leader, it was much easier to find reason to worry in Kemp’s move, saying it’s a decision “he’s gotta live with.”

“I really wish he’d taken it a lot slower,” Kay Godwin, the GOP chairwoman in Pierce County, said. “People say, he’s not demanding that you do it, but in this society all you have to do is to give a little bit of opening and they take a mile.”