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Governor Reeves: Mississippi will not...

Governor Reeves: Mississippi will not return to widespread masking or COVID rules

By: Frank Corder - August 28, 2023
Governor Tate Reeves

Mississippi Gov. Tate Reeves (AP Photo/Rogelio V. Solis - Copyright 2023 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.)

As COVID cases rise across the country, the Mississippi Governor says citizens in the Magnolia State “will live in self-determination, not top-down fear.”

U.S. health experts are tracking the spread of three new COVID variants as cases rise in various parts of the country. The increase in cases has national media scurrying to report on businesses, schools, and local governments reinstating mask recommendations or mandates.

Here in Mississippi, Governor Tate Reeves (R) says the Magnolia State will not return to widespread masking or COVID rules.

“Mississippians will not and should not submit to fear again. In the early days of COVID, there was understandable uncertainty. We did not yet know what we were facing,” Reeves said on Monday in a social media post. “As the months unfolded, it became clear that there were two pandemics. A disease that was easy to spread and that was deadly for many vulnerable people. And a pandemic of fear stoked by ‘the expert class’ that demanded total subjugation of the American people.”

Governor Reeves went on to say that in the first days of national unity, it seemed ridiculous to assume that bureaucrats and ‘experts’ were trying to seize power.

“Now, it seems ridiculous to assume they wouldn’t try it again,” the Governor wrote. “The simple answer to the question being posed by ‘experts’ is: no. We will not return to widespread masking or COVID rules.”

Governor Reeves said if Mississippians want to take extraordinary measures to protect themselves from getting sick, “God bless you.”

“That is your right and you should do what you think is best. Maybe you’re the smartest of all of us. But we are never going back to 2020,” Reeves said. “People have a right to make their own decisions. To decide how much risk they tolerate. And no matter what pronouncements come down from the Biden/Fauci administration: we will go to school, we will go to church, we will go to work, and we will play sports. We will live in self-determination, not top-down fear.”

According to the Mississippi Department of Health, COVID-19-like visits to Mississippi hospitals have steadily been on the rise since early July. Yet, the 121 admissions reported for the week of August 12, 2023, was nowhere near the pandemic high 1,360 reported for the week of January 22, 2022. The CDC reported COVID-related deaths has been between 1 and 9 in Mississippi for every week expect one since late June.

Magnolia Tribune reached out to the campaign of Democratic gubernatorial candidate Brandon Presley to ask if he were elected Governor, would Presley reinstate statewide mask mandates or seek to restrict public activities in any way as COVID cases rise in the state. However, at the time of publication no response has been received nor has Presley’s campaign publicly commented on such as of late.


UPDATE: After the publication of this article, the Presley campaign responded with, “No,” in reference to the question of whether the Democratic gubernatorial candidate would reinstate a mask mandate if he were elected Governor.

About the Author(s)
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Frank Corder

Frank Corder is a native of Pascagoula. For nearly two decades, he has reported and offered analysis on government, public policy, business and matters of faith. Frank’s interviews, articles, and columns have been shared throughout Mississippi as well as in national publications. He is a frequent guest on radio and television, providing insight and commentary on the inner workings of the Magnolia State. Frank has served his community in both elected and appointed public office, hosted his own local radio and television programs, and managed private businesses all while being an engaged husband and father. Email Frank: