Greg Abbott

Regional News • Americas • United States
Biden slammed governors for lifting mask mandates, calling it 'Neanderthal thinking'
President Joe Biden talks on the phone with Texas Gov. Greg Abbott
President Joe Biden talks on the phone with Texas Gov. Greg Abbott Credit: The White House (Public Domain)

After the Republican Governors of Texas, Greg Abbott, and Mississippi, Tate Reeves, announced Tuesday they would allow businesses to reopen at 100% capacity and lift mask mandates, President Joe Biden slammed states that repealed Covid-19 restrictions on businesses and rescinded mask mandates for residents, calling the moves a "big mistake."

On Monday, before the two governors announced it, Dr Rochelle Walensky, director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, warned state officials against lifting public health restrictions too quickly.

"The last thing, the last thing we need is Neanderthal thinking, that, ‘In the meantime, everything’s fine. Take off your mask. Forget it.’ It still matters," Biden said.

Regional News • Americas • United States
Govenor Greg Abbott lifts mask mandate in Texas, despite warnings from health officials
Greg Abbott, Governor of Texas
Greg Abbott, Governor of Texas Credit: World Travel & Tourism Council (Creative Commons Attribution 2.0)

Texas state leader Greg Abbott announced today that he was rolling back a previous mandate which required masks to be worn in all public businesses. This decision has been met with widespread criticism and controversy, as Texas is well below the target vaccinated percentage of its populace.

Abbott cited the damages to small businesses as the primary reason for the roll-back of the mask mandate. The mandate repeal will be removed next week, on Wednesday.

Regional News • Americas • United States
Winter storms cause power outages for millions in Texas
Snow on Mockingbird Lane approaching Central Expressway, Dallas, Texas, U.S.
Snow on Mockingbird Lane approaching Central Expressway, Dallas, Texas, U.S. Credit: Joe Mabel, via Wikimedia Commons (Creative Commons Attribution 3.0)

An unprecedented winter storm has left roughly 4.3 million Texans without electricity due to a surge in demand, with people not having electricity for over 24 hours. Other states, including Kentucky, Mississippi, Alabama, Oklahoma and Oregon, were also affected by the severe weather conditions.

Texas Governor Gregg Abbott has urged "all Texans to remain vigilant against the extremely harsh weather" and air travellers were warned that they should expect delays or cancellations.

Climate & Environment
Hurricane Hanna makes landfall in South Texas, causes flooding and power outages
National Hurricane Center's 5-day track and intensity forecast cone of Atlantic AL072020 Tropical Depression Eight.
National Hurricane Center's 5-day track and intensity forecast cone of Atlantic AL072020 Tropical Depression Eight. Credit: National Hurricane Center / Public domain

Hurricane Hanna has made landfall in South Texas and Northeastern Mexico and left over 280,000 without power in Texas on Sunday morning. Flash flood emergencies have been declared in Mission and Hidalgo County.

Meteorologist Chris Birchfield warns that the hurricane is far from over and that they were "still expecting catastrophic flooding."

"Any hurricane is an enormous challenge," Texas Governor Abbott said on Saturday. "This challenge is complicated and made even more severe, seeing that it is sweeping through an area that is the most challenged area in the state for Covid-19."

Regional News • Americas • United States
Texas Gov. Abbott issued executive order, makes face masks mandatory
Texas Gov. Abbott issued executive order, makes face masks mandatory
Credit: unsplash.com/David Emrich

Texas Governor Greg Abbott has issued an executive order on Thursday, making the wear of face coverings in public mandatory. The order applies to counties which have at least 20 confirmed Covid-19 cases. Children under the age of 10 and people with some medical conditions are exempt. Masks are also not required while dining out and during certain athletic activities if a distance to others can be maintained.

"We have the ability to keep businesses open and move our economy forward so that Texans can continue to earn a paycheck, but it requires each of us to do our part to protect one another — and that means wearing a face covering in public spaces," so the Governor in a statement.

Regional News • Americas • United States
Texas is pausing reopening plans amid surge in Covid-19 cases
Gov. Greg Abbott in 2016
Gov. Greg Abbott in 2016 Credit: World Travel & Tourism Council / CC BY (Creative Commons Attribution 2.0)

In a press conference on Thursday, Texas Governor Greg Abbott announced a temporary pause on reopening measures amid a surge in Covid-19 cases and hospitalisations. The state reported almost 6,000 new cases on Thursday and a record high for Covid-19 hospitalisations.

"The last thing we want to do as a state is go backwards and close down businesses. This temporary pause will help our state corral the spread until we can safely enter the next phase of opening our state for business," so the Governor.