Texas, Mississippi Rolling Back All COVID19 Precautions Despite Warnings

On the same day that President Joe Biden announced that it would be possible for all adults in America to be vaccinated by the end of May, the Governors of Texas and Mississippi have decided to roll back all COVID19 safety precautions and restrictions, allowing residents to return to all normal activities. Texas Governor Greg Abbott promised on Tuesday that his state would be “back to 100% by March 10th” despite healthcare experts warning that no states should be at that point just yet.

Shortly after Abbott’s announcement, Governor Tate Reeves announced that he would end Mississippi’s statewide mask mandate, effective Wednesday of this week.”Our hospitalizations and case numbers have plummeted, and the vaccine is being rapidly distributed,” Reeves tweeted. “It is time!”

Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images

On Monday, CDC Director Rochelle Walensky strongly cautioned against the very rollbacks that Abbott and Reeves were about to implement. “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,” Walensky said at the daily White House Covid-19 briefing.

“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.”

Abbott said his new executive order would rescind “most” of his prior Covid-19 executive orders, and that all businesses would be allowed to open “100 percent,” effective March 10th. The end of the mask mandate makes Texas the largest state to end a rule aimed to slow the spread of the coronavirus pandemic. With 29 million residents mostly unvaccinated, Abbott is setting up a state already ravaged enough by the recent winter storms for more misery with potential outbreaks.

Abbott also claimed that the millions of Texans who caught and recovered from Covid mean that millions “have the proven ability to beat this disease.”

“Covid still exists,” Abbott said, “but it is clear from the recoveries, from the vaccinations, from the reduced hospitalizations, and from the safe practices that Texans are using, that state mandates are no longer needed.”

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