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U.S. – Republican Mississippi Governor Tate Reeves announced today that his state will fully reopening businesses starting Wednesday.
“Starting tomorrow, we are lifting all of our county mask mandates and businesses will be able to operate at full capacity without any state-imposed rules,” Reeves announced in a tweet.
The lockdowns “have to end at the earliest possible moment,” said Reeves. ‘This is that moment for Mississippi.
“Our hospitalizations and case numbers have plummeted, and the vaccine is being rapidly distributed. It is time!”
Starting tomorrow, we are lifting all of our county mask mandates and businesses will be able to operate at full capacity without any state-imposed rules. Our hospitalizations and case numbers have plummeted, and the vaccine is being rapidly distributed. It is time!— Tate Reeves (@tatereeves) March 2, 2021
New daily positive COVID cases have fallen in Mississippi since the beginning of the year. On March 1 the state recorded only 199 new cases.
Another Republican Governor, Texas’ Greg Abbott also announced that his state will lift all restrictions on businesses and do away with state mask mandates.
Abbott made the announcement during a Lubbock Chamber of Commerce event where he issued an executive order rescinding most of his earlier executive orders such as the mask mandate.
Abbott said businesses of any type will be allowed to open 100 per cent beginning March 10.
“Too many Texans have been sidelined from employment opportunities. Too many small business owners have struggled to pay their bills. This must end. It is now time to open Texas 100 per cent,” he said.
I just announced Texas is OPEN 100%.— Greg Abbott (@GregAbbott_TX) March 2, 2021
I also ended the statewide mask mandate.
On Tuesday Abbott said 5.7 million vaccine shots have been administered in Texas, there is a surplus of personal protective equipment (PPE) and “10 million Texans have recovered from Covid.”
“Removing state mandates does not end personal responsibility and caring for your family members, friends and others in your community,” said Abbott. “People and businesses don’t need the state telling them how to operate.”
Harris County Judge Lina Hidalgo, however, disagreed with the governor’s decision.
“Taking away critical public health interventions” that are working won’t make Texas communities safer or speed up the return to normalcy, Hidalgo said.”Every time public health measures have been pulled back, we’ve seen a spike in hospitalizations.”
Abbott said on a county level a judge can’t put anyone in jail for not following Covid orders and no penalties can be imposed for people who don’t wear masks.
“If restrictions are imposed at the county level, all entities must be allowed to operate at at least 50 per cent capacity,” said Abbott.
Dallas Mayor Eric Johnson tweeted that people should still wear masks.
The people of Dallas should continue to mask up and take precautions to slow COVID-19’s spread and mutations. We are getting closer to achieving herd immunity, and now is not the time to let down our guard. (1/2)— Mayor Eric Johnson (@Johnson4Dallas) March 2, 2021