Nevada officials condemned comments Wednesday by Las Vegas Mayor Carolyn Goodman after she called for casinos and other nonessential businesses to reopen and suggested the city could serve as a test case to measure the impact during the coronavirus pandemic.

One local official called her comments “reckless and dangerous” and another described them as an “embarrassment.”

Goodman, during a 25-minute interview with Anderson Cooper on CNN, said she wants everything back open, including casinos, restaurants and small businesses, and a return of conventions.

The politically independent mayor suggested that “viruses for years have been here” and said that she had suggested that the residents of Las Vegas become “a control group” to see how relaxing closures and restrictions would affect the city.

“I offered to be a control group and I was told by our statistician you can’t do that because people from all parts of southern Nevada come in to work in the city,” Goodman said. “We would love to be that placebo side so you have something to measure against.”

Story continues below advertisement

Las Vegas Mayor Carolyn Goodman calls for businesses to reopen, while saying she won’t provide social distancing guidelines on how to do so safely.

 » READ MORE FROM GLOBAL NEWS