Gov. Greg Abbott’s executive order to loosen COVID-19 restrictions in Texas began March 10 and the left predictably went wild.
Failed presidential and U.S. Senate candidate Robert O’Rourke rushed to MSNBC to declare people would die; President Joe Biden infamously declared it “Neanderthal thinking,” and his press secretary defended the slur; pro-lockdown experts were “mortified and disgusted.”
The rollback was even decried by Dr. Anthony Fauci.
“We understand people’s need to get back to normal, and we’re going in that direction. But when you start doing things like completely putting aside all public health measures as if you’re turning a light switch off, that’s quite risky,” Fauci said on CNN.
They all were wrong.
With its mask mandate lifted and businesses allowed to open at full capacity, Texas is not seeing a surge of new COVID-19 cases. Nearly a month later, basically the opposite occurred, and COVID-19 outcomes did not worsen.
CDC data show the seven-day moving average number of cases in the Lone Star State recently dropped to the lowest level since June 2020, to well below 3,000. More importantly, deaths are way down to under 100 most days.
And since facts should matter, there was not some sort of “mask ban” as zealots intimate. Although Abbott’s statewide mask mandate was lifted, individual businesses still limited capacity and/or imposed mask mandates at their own choosing.
Abbott also included in his order a provision for county judges across the state’s 22 hospital regions to “use COVID-19 mitigation strategies” if hospitalizations rise over 15 percent of hospital bed capacity for seven straight days.
At the time the executive order was issued a month ago, the seven-day average of COVID-19 cases in Texas was 7,259. That number dropped to 5,350 cases a week later after the economy fully opened. Two weeks later, the number of daily new cases stands at fewer than 3,500.
At the time of publishing, roughly eight million Texans — almost one-third of the state — have received at least one dose of the coronavirus vaccine, with nearly five million fully vaccinated. All residents age 16 years and older are now eligible for vaccinations.
Mississippi Republican Gov. Tate Reeves followed the data and made a similar move in early March. Despite opprobrium from the same crowd, he’s been proven correct, too. More than a quarter of all Mississippians have now been vaccinated. (About 40% of all adults in the U.S. have received one dose of a COVID vaccine.)
So just like when the same dire predictions and attacks were recently leveled by progressive media types at Republican governors in Georgia and Florida, they’ve been proven wrong. It’s a good thing Biden, Fauci, O’Rourke and supposed “experts” don’t oversee Florida, Georgia, Mississippi or Texas.