COLUMBUS, Ohio — “Everything a governor does is certainly not just subject to public criticism, but a governor has an obligation to lead and a governor has an obligation to bring people along.”
Those were the words of Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine earlier this week when asked if he should have been tougher on the state’s mask policies sooner.
“I made the decision after we put out the original mask order that requiring masks out in public was something that people, by and large, were not ready for at that time. We did, as you know, have mask guidelines and orders that went into effect for any business. Those are still in effect. By and large, those have worked exceedingly well.”
As Ohio’s 21-day average of newly reported coronavirus cases continues climbing, Gov. DeWine took a moment to stress the importance of wearing a mask.
“We are now at a different time. We are at a much more dangerous time,” he continued. “We are at a point in time where I believe Ohioans, when they look at Texas or when they look at Florida, will say we do not want to go there.”
His comments came as he ordered mandatory masks in seven Ohio counties that have been designated at a “level 3” coronavirus alert. These seven counties include Butler, Cuyahoga, Franklin, Hamilton, Huron, Montgomery and Trumbull. You can read more details about how these mask requirements work HERE.
“We’ll be willing to accept in the seven red counties – that are red hot – that wearing a mask out in public is absolutely imperative for the future of their county and for the future of the state, both from an economic point of view as well as from the point of view of keeping us all safe. I think Ohioans are ready for this. I think we have to do it.”
Gov. DeWine called masks “a symbol of freedom” during a press conference last week.
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