Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear
FILE - In this May 11, 2020, file photo, Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear puts on a face mask after speaking to reporters at the Capitol in Frankfort, Ky. Kentucky's governor said Sunday, Oct. 11, 2020, that he will quarantine after a member of his security detail who drove with his family the day before later tested positive for COVID-19. Democratic Gov. Andy Beshear said he and his family feel fine, show no coronavirus symptoms and have tested negative for the virus. (Ryan C. Hermens/Lexington Herald-Leader via AP, File)
 

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- Oldham County Attorney John Carter said he won't prosecute anyone who defies the governor's order limiting Thanksgiving gatherings to eight people, instead encouraging people to celebrate the holiday as they wish.

"It's just not enforceable or prosecutable," he said. "I'm not going to prosecute anyone that's charged with this. The police can't go around to everybody's house and knock on doors and see how many people they have over for Thanksgiving."

After Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear announced new restrictions Wednesday in an effort to combat a surge in COVID-19 cases, Carter took to his professional Facebook page, deeming the order on household gatherings "unreasonable."

"Our office therefore will not prosecute any alleged violation of those orders," the post reads. "Have a happy Thanksgiving with as many of your family members you want to celebrate this national holiday, as you desire."

Beshear called out Carter's post during his briefing Thursday in Frankfort, instead urging people to listen to health officials to limit Thanksgiving gatherings next week.

"My God, that is horrible advice. That could mean that families that follow it don't have the same people for Christmas as they do for Thanksgiving," Beshear said. "Unless County Attorney John Carter is smarter than the CDC, this is advice that could be absolutely deadly. You are a public servant. Don't be irresponsible."

Beshear acknowledged that the order would be difficult to enforce, and said that "nobody's going to show up to your house if you have more people than you should." However, he said those who defy the order would spread the virus and will be "putting those that you love the most at risk."

Carter said guidance to wear masks and social distance is already apparent to Kentuckians.

"I don't think it's a matter of not caring about health," Carter said. "I think the order presumes incorrectly that the citizens of the state of Kentucky don't have the ability to protect themselves."

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