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US Alabama Governor Breaks With Fellow Republicans, Sides With Biden on Mask Order

10:37  07 march  2021
10:37  07 march  2021 Source:   newsweek.com

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One Republican governor is breaking with the pack and siding with the Biden administration on face masks amid a flurry of rollbacks on COVID-19 restrictions. Alabama Governor Kay Ivey at a press conference on March 4. Ivey announced that she will extend the statewide mask mandate for another month, despite the decisions of fellow Republican governors who have lifted their orders in recent days.

The governor of Alabama has extended the state's mask mandate — but only through April 9. Gov. Kay Ivey broke with GOP leaders in Texas and Mississippi who ended mask requirements days earlier. Ivey said she hoped the extension would allow for more Alabamians to get vaccinated before April. Alabamians will have to continue wearing masks in public, but only for another five weeks. The state's Republican governor announced Thursday the statewide mask mandate intended to help curb the spread of COVID-19 will be extended one last time, through April 9. The order was previously set

One Republican governor is breaking with the pack and siding with the Biden administration on face masks amid a flurry of rollbacks on COVID-19 restrictions.

a group of people standing in a room: Alabama Governor Kay Ivey at a press conference on March 4, 2021. Ivey announced that she will extend the statewide mask mandate for another month, despite the decision of fellow Republican governors who have lifted their orders in recent days. © Twitter: @GovernorKayIvey Alabama Governor Kay Ivey at a press conference on March 4, 2021. Ivey announced that she will extend the statewide mask mandate for another month, despite the decision of fellow Republican governors who have lifted their orders in recent days.

Alabama Governor Kay Ivey announced on Thursday that she will extend the statewide mask mandate for another month, noting that while coronavirus metrics have fallen, it is not yet time to lift the order.

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Alabama 's Republican Governor Extends Face Mask Mandate. The associated press (kim chandler). March 4, 2021, 12:03 PM EST Updated on March 4, 2021, 4:57 PM EST. Montgomery, Ala. (AP) -- Breaking with other Southern GOP governors , Alabama Gov. Kay Ivey extended her state’s mask order for another month Thursday but said the requirement will end for good in April. The move came a day after President Joe Biden slammed the governors of Texas and Mississippi for deciding to lift their mask mandates, saying their actions reflect “Neanderthal thinking.”

Ivey issued Alabama ’s mask order in July and announced on Thursday that she would extend it five more weeks until April 9. GOP governors from Texas to South Carolina have resisted, or ended, statewide mask orders . But the 76-year-old governor of the deeply red state has resisted calls to drop the requirement as Republican governors across the South either shunned mask mandates altogether or lifted them in late winter. “Maybe they don’t have access to the same information I have. We want to be abundantly clear and abundantly safe before we drop the mask mandate,” Ivey said

"There's no question that wearing masks has been one of my greatest tools in combating the spread of the virus," Ivey said at a press conference.

"And even when we lift the mask order, I will continue to wear my mask while I'm around others, and strongly urge my fellow citizens to use common sense and do the same thing. But at that time it will become a matter of personal responsibility and not a government mandate," she added.

Ivey said the extension is to allow businesses time to implement their own safety policies before the order is lifted on April 9.

Her remarks come days after Governors Greg Abbott of Texas and Tate Reeves of Mississippi have rescinded their statewide mask mandates and rolled back on many COVID-19 restrictions.

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Alabama ’s Republican governor called for “common sense” while announcing an extension of her state’s mask mandate amid growing pressures from within the GOP to disregard public health safety measures for the coronavirus. Governor Kay Ivey said on Thursday that masks were “one of our greatest tools” in curbing the spread of Covid infections as states work to administer new vaccines approved for use by the FDA. “We need to get past Easter and hopefully allow more Alabamians to get their first shot before we take a step some other states have taken to remove the mask order

I’m a substitute teacher in Alabama and there’s no way my students would wear a mask if Kay Ivy dropped the mandate. And I think that it’s at least more reasonable after April. Teachers in my county will all have the vaccine by then at least. To her credit, Gov Ivey has seemed to listen to the medical professionals on this one and not people like Will Ainsworth. I expected her to ease restrictions on capacity of restaurants which I tend to believe is largely aimed at the coast and spring break being right around the corner.

On Tuesday, Abbott announced that Texas businesses would be able to reopen at 100 percent capacity as early as next week and Reeves stated that masks would no longer be required effective immediately.

"Governor Ivey has taken a deliberate and thoughtful approach throughout the pandemic and is simply trying to do the best thing for Alabama," Ivey's press secretary Gina Mailoa wrote Newsweek. "We are different than some of our neighboring states, and we are surely not New York or California."

Ivey's Thursday announcement falls closer in line with the advice of health experts from the Biden administration and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

Although the number of hospitalizations and deaths from the virus have begun declining, officials have asked Americans to stay vigilant in wearing face coverings to continue curbing the spread of COVID-19.

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Breaking with other Southern GOP governors , Alabama Gov. Kay Ivey extended her state’s mask order for another month Thursday but said the requirement will end for good in April. The move came a day after President Joe Biden slammed the governors of Texas and Mississippi for deciding to lift their mask mandates, saying their actions reflect “Neanderthal thinking.” Ivey has faced political pressure to lift the mask order like her Republican counterparts but said she will follow the recommendations of medical officials and keep the mandate that was set to expire Friday in place until April 9.

Alabama 's governor said Thursday she is extending the state's mask mandate until April 9. "After April the 9th I will not keep the mask order in effect," Gov. President Joe Biden on Wednesday called Abbott's decision "Neanderthal thinking." "I hope everybody has realized by now these masks make a difference," Biden told reporters in the Oval Office. "And the last thing, the last thing, the last thing we need is the Neanderthal thinking that in the meantime everything’s fine, take off your mask ," Biden said.

President Joe Biden called it "Neanderthal thinking" to begin lifting mask orders at this time, and CDC Director Rochelle Walensky told reporters that new variants threaten "to completely lose the hard-earned ground we have gained."

"Now is not the time to relax restrictions," Walensky said.

Under Alabama's current order, masks are required in public whenever someone is within six feet of another individual that lives in a different household. Face coverings are also required in schools and colleges for both employees and students in the second grade and above. But masks won't be required in these instances beginning early April.

The order had previously been set to expire on Friday at 5 p.m.

Alabama, like most other states, has seen hospitalizations fall in recent weeks as vaccinations continue to be administered. As of Thursday, there have been 944,795 COVID-19 vaccines administered in the state and the number is expected to rise quickly now that Johnson & Johnson has begun shipping its one-dose vaccine.

According to the CDC, 13.5 percent of Alabamians have received at least the first dose of the vaccine.

Alabama governor says she won't extend mask mandate past April 9

  Alabama governor says she won't extend mask mandate past April 9 Alabama's statewide mask mandate to curb the coronavirus is being extended to April 9 -- but it won't be extended after that, Gov. Kay Ivey said Thursday. © Mickey Welsh/Advertiser/Imagn Governor Kay Ivey and State Health Officer Scott Harris give a COVID-19 update and extend the mask order during a news conference at the Alabama Capitol Building in Montgomery, Ala., on Thursday March 4, 2021.

"Governor Ivey is taking the Alabama approach, but similar to Governors Abbott and Reeves, she is no fan of government mandates," Mailoa told Newsweek. "Today, she made clear that the mask requirement will not extend past April 9 so that businesses and individuals have time to implement any desired policies or adjustments."

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