US Texas Mayor Calls Governor's Lifting Mask Mandate 'Wrong,' Apologizes for Mexico Trip
Texas Reopens Despite Only Californians Dying From COVID in Higher Numbers
"With this executive order, we are ensuring that all businesses and families in Texas have the freedom to determine their own destiny," said Governor Greg Abbott.Texas Gov. Greg Abbott issued an executive order on Tuesday lifting the state's mask mandate and increasing the capacity limits of all businesses and facilities to 100 percent. It takes effect next Wednesday, March 10.
Democratic Mayor Steve Adler of Austin, Texas criticized Governor's decision to lift the statewide mask mandate during a Saturday appearance on .
"I have been really hard and really insistent that the mandate shouldn't have gone away," Adler told Fox News host Neil Cavuto. "We try to be guided by science and the data, and removing the mandate is not being guided by the science and the data."
Texas Gov. Abbott faces backlash after lifting coronavirus restrictions
Texas Gov. Greg Abbott is facing a torrent of criticism over his surprise decision to roll back his state's mask mandate and business restrictions -- moves that strategists and activists in both parties said are aimed at appeasing an impatient Republican base ahead of his 2022 reelection bid and with an eye on the 2024 presidential race. © Justin Rex/AP Texas Governor Greg Abbott delivers an announcement in Montelongo's Mexican Restaurant on Tuesday, March 2, 2021, in Lubbock, Texas. Abbott announced that he is rescinding executive orders that limit capacities for businesses and the state wide mask mandate.
"Whatever you want to call it, it's the wrong move," Adler added.
The Austin mayor then noted that wearing a face mask doesn't slow down the process of reopening businesses or returning children to in-person learning.
"I'm disappointed that the mandate is being withdrawn. Our governor has said that it's still important to wear masks, and I appreciate that. But removing the mandate, I think we create an ambiguity," Adler said.
The Austin mayor added that, due to the lift of the statewide mask mandate, many people in Texas will believe that "masking doesn't work, it's not effective, or that we're past concern on the virus."
"That ambiguity in communication is what I have the biggest issue with," Adler continued.
CDC director urges people to keep masking and distancing 'regardless of what states decide'
The director of the US Disease Control and Prevention on Wednesday said she hopes people will decide to individually "do the right thing" about distancing and wearing masks, even in states moving to eliminate restrictions against the CDC's recommendations."I think we at the CDC have been very clear that now is not the time to release all restrictions," Dr. Rochelle Walensky said during a White House COVID-19 Response Team briefing.
Abbott declaredlast week and unveiled a plan to lift the statewide mask mandate and other COVID-19 restrictions effective beginning March 10. The plan came as Texas saw an uptick in new daily coronavirus cases.
Over the past week, Texas reported an average of 6,190 new COVID-19 cases each day, a 47 percent increase compared to the two weeks prior, according to data from The New York Times.
The governor's decision to lift the mask mandate has metas lawmakers criticized the move.
Republican Mayor Betsy Price of Fort Worth, Texas called the governor's decision to lift the mask mandateOther Texas mayors, including Oscar Leeser of El Paso and Eric Johnson of Dallas, have urged their community to continue wearing masks.
Presidentalso weighed in and called Abbott's decision
California Advises Double Masking as Texas, Mississippi Ditch Mandates
As a handful of U.S. states ditch mask mandates amid the ongoing COVID pandemic, health officials in California have doubled down, even suggesting the use of more than one covering.California's health department updated its advice about the most effective use of masks and when to consider "double masking" on Thursday, after Gov. Gavin Newsom said the decision to stop enforcing face covering use in Texas was "absolutely reckless.
Adler faced criticism after hein early November, even though he told residents in his city to stay home and "not relax" amid the coronavirus pandemic.
He has since apologized for the trip, saying "it was a lapse in judgment."
"I want you to know that I regret that travel," Adler added. "I wouldn't travel now."
Newsweek reached out to Adler's office, but didn't hear back in time for publication.
Texas Official Sees No Reason for State Removing Mask Mandate to Claim 'Premature Victory' .
"There's no reason why to open ourselves up to unnecessary death, unnecessary hospitalization, just for the sake of wanting to claim a premature victory," Judge Lina Hidalgo said."There's no reason why to open ourselves up to unnecessary death, unnecessary hospitalization, just for the sake of wanting to claim a premature victory," Hidalgo told host Lisa Desjardins on the PBS NewsHour.