As President Joe Biden’s Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) pushed out new guidance instructing all Americans, to include the vaccinated, to once again wear masks indoors, Texas Gov. Greg Abbott (R) immediately took a stand against the guidance, prompting a number of court challenges.
Though a number of left-leaning localities in the state of Texas attempted to challenge the governor’s announcement that mask mandates are prohibited in his state, according to The Hill, the Republican governor emerged with a victory over the weekend, as the state’s Supreme Court ruled in Abbott’s favor.
The governor praised the state’s highest court for its decision in a Sunday tweet, in which he clarified that he’s not out to ban people from wearing masks, rather, he’s making sure residents of his state aren’t forced to don them.
BREAKING: The Texas Supreme Court imposes a temporary halt to lower court decisions that overruled the State ban on mask mandates.
The ban doesn’t prohibit using masks. Anyone who wants to wear a mask can do so, including in schools.https://t.co/QeVipZMPWH
— Greg Abbott (@GregAbbott_TX) August 15, 2021
What went down?
A number of district judges throughout the state issued temporary restraining orders against Abbott’s intentions of prohibiting new mask mandates across the state.
Intermediate appellate courts would go on to uphold the restraining orders, as recently as Friday, which provided local health department officials across the state to enact mask mandates against the governor’s original orders.
Those orders were upheld in four of the state’s largest counties and allowed cities like Houston and Dallas to abide by Biden’s CDC and enforce mask mandates, as apparently, they have nothing more important to do than make sure unvaccinated and vaccinated Americans are required to once again strap on a muzzle for routine indoor activities.
Thankfully, the Texas Supreme Court, which has handed Abbott and conservatives a string of recent wins, stepped in and blocked the orders issued by the state’s appellate courts, setting up yet another showdown for later this month on whether or not counties can override the governor.
Two large school districts in the state, including the Dallas Independent School District, have already made it clear that it will go against the ruling, as masks will be required for all students returning to the classroom in the coming days.
According to Texas Public Radio, one of the district judges, Bexar County Judge Nelson Wolff, who clearly favors mask mandates, said he was upset with the Supreme Court siding with the Republican governor.
“I’m obviously very disappointed in it. It’s not surprising because they’re all Republicans and they’ve got to run in the Republican primary,” Wolff said. “But that doesn’t mean we’re not going to keep up the battle to protect the school children of Texas.”
Only time will tell where this battle ends up, but Gov. Abbott has made clear his stance on the issue and does not appear ready to back down anytime soon.