Texas, Fresh Off A Public Safety Power Grid Fiasco, Will End Mask Mandates And Re-Open ‘100 Percent’

There were over 8,000 new cases of coronavirus in Texas on Monday. In related news, Greg Abbott, the governor of the second most populated state in the country with the sixth worst vaccine distribution percentage, announced today that he is ending the statewide mask mandate and will allow all businesses to open at full capacity beginning next Wednesday. “Too many Texans have been sidelined from employment opportunities,” he said. “Too many small business owners have struggled to pay their bills. This must end. It is now time to open Texas 100 percent.”

The Associated Press reports that Abbott lifting the mask mandate comes after “governors across the U.S. have been easing coronavirus restrictions, despite warnings from health experts that the pandemic is far from over,” including over 1,400 deaths yesterday. “Like the rest of the country, Texas has seen the number of cases and deaths plunge. Hospitalizations are at the lowest levels since October, and the seven-day rolling average of positive tests has dropped to about 7,600 cases, down from more than 10,000 in mid-February.” But as Dr. Rochelle Walensky, the director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, recently said on Meet the Press, “The cases are more than two-and-a-half-fold times what we saw over the summer. It’s encouraging to see these trends coming down, but they’re coming down from an extraordinarily high place.”

Abbott was recently criticized for falsely blaming the winter storm that left millions of Texans without electricity and running water on frozen turbines instead of the real issue: “Texas [putting] an emphasis on cheap prices over reliable service.”

Happy Texas Independence Day, everyone.

(Via the AP)