Both the governors of Texas and Mississippi made announcements this past Tuesday noting that they would be living mandates on masks, as well as the majority of COVID-19 mandates. The governors made this decision one day after a warning from the CDC regarding new COVID variants.
At a trip to Montelongo’s Mexican Restaurant in Lubbock this past Tuesday afternoon, Texas Governor Greg Abbott said, “It is now time to open Texas 100 percent.”
“Covid has not suddenly disappeared,” he said, “but state mandates are no longer needed.”
Not very long after this announcement from Governor Abbott, Tate Reeves, governor of Mississippi announced that he would be lifting the mask mandate, as well as other Covid-19 restrictions.
In a recent Tweet, Reeves said, “Our hospitalizations and case numbers have plummeted, and the vaccine is being rapidly distributed. It’s time!”
The CDC Responds
Rochelle Walensky, CDC director, reported this past Monday strongly cautioning against these types of rollbacks from Reeves and Abbott.
In the last daily White House Covid-10 briefing, Walensky said, “I am really worried about reports that more states are rolling back the exact public health measures we have recommended to protect people from Covid-19.”
“Please hear me clearly,” Walensky said. “At this level of cases with variants spreading, we stand to completely lose the hard-earned ground we have gained.”
“This fight is far from over,” Biden said. “Though we celebrate the news … I urge all Americans, please keep washing your hands, stay socially distanced, wear masks.”
On March 10, Governor Abbott new order would rescind the majority of the president’s power regarding executive orders surrounding COVID-19. By this time, all restaurants will be allowed to open up completely.
What Does This Mean For Texas?
Texas’ end to the mask mandate makes this state of 29 million residents the most populous state to lift restrictions made to slow the spread of COVID-19.
Abbott, in an effort to champion the economic prowess of Texas, says that “too many Texans were sidelined from employment opportunities” as businesses were operating with reduced capacities.
He also notes that Texas is currently in a “completely different position” compared to when the first executive orders were made back in March of 2020.
“We now have vaccines,” says Abbott. This past Tuesday, Texas set a single-day vaccine administration record. The state is currently averaging one million vaccines every week.
Abbott also says that the many million Texan resident who caught COVID-19 and recovered from it says that people have the “ability to beat this disease.”
Reeves agrees with Abbott in many ways, noting that “Executive orders that interfered with peoples’ lives were the worst, but the only possible, intervention for much of the last year,” Reeves said. “Now, we are putting our focus towards rapid vaccine distribution. We are getting out of the business of telling people what they can and cannot do.”