“We are going to double the wearing of masks,” California Governor Gavin Newsom said Thursday, “without arguing to follow the lead of Texas and other states which I think are making a terrible mistake.”
This is the second time this week that Newsom, a Democrat, has torn up the actions of his Republican counterpart Greg Abbott of Texas.
Just minutes after Newsom announced Tuesday that seven local counties were allowed to reopen further due to falling Covid-19 numbers, the California governor excoriated a same-day decision by Abbott to lift the mandate of mask this state.
Sharing an Associated Press story on Twitter, Newsom simply wrote, “Absolutely reckless.”
“The removal of statewide warrants does not end personal accountability,” Abbott said, as quoted by AP, as he spoke from a crowded dining room in Lubbock. “It’s just that now state mandates are no longer needed,” he said. Mississippi also lifted its mask requirement on Tuesday.
Abbott later wrote triumphantly on Twitter, “I just announced that Texas is 100% OPEN.”
Newsom, apparently responding to Abbot on Thursday, said: “Sorry, the positivity rate is 2.1 in California. It is five times this in Texas. Four times in Florida and some of those states.
“Now is not the time to throw the ball,” he continued. “There is no ‘mission accomplished’ sign behind us.”
Indeed, Texas this week edged out the more populous California in new cases. As of Thursday, according to Johns Hopkins University, the Lone Star State recorded 7,621 new cases, the highest number in the country. It was followed by New York at around 6,500, Florida at around 6,000, and California at 4,354.