WASHINGTON, AUSTIN and DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM/CNN) – In an effort prevent further spread of the delta variant, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention updated its mask guidance on Tuesday, July 27, to recommend fully-vaccinated people wear masks indoors when in areas with “substantial” and “high” transmission of COVID-19, which includes nearly two-thirds of all U.S. counties.
“In recent days I have seen new scientific data from recent outbreak investigations showing that the Delta variant behaves uniquely differently from past strains of the virus that cause Covid-19,” CDC Director Dr. Rochelle Walensky told a media briefing on Tuesday. “This new science is worrisome and unfortunately warrants an update to our recommendations,” she said. “This is not a decision that we or CDC has made lightly.”
Texas Sen. Ted Cruz responded a short time later calling the CDC’s latest recommendation a mandate and said the CDC has lost its credibility.
Here is is full statement on the matter:
“Today’s decision, sadly, was driven by politics, not science. Let me be clear: there should be no more COVID mandates, no mask mandates, no vaccine mandates, no vaccine passports, no lockdowns, and no school closures. Enough is enough. The CDC has lost its credibility when it comes to what decisions Americans should make about COVID-19. It’s long past time we got back to trusting the American people, not unelected federal bureaucrats.”
Texas Gov. Greg Abbott expressed his disappointment in the new CDC recommendation, also using the term, “mask mandates” in a tweet.
He said, “The time for government mask mandates is over—now is the time for personal responsibility. In May, I signed an executive order prohibiting mask mandates by gov’t entities. Every Texan has the right to choose whether they will wear a mask or have their children wear masks.”
The time for government mask mandates is over—now is the time for personal responsibility.
In May, I signed an executive order prohibiting mask mandates by gov't entities.
Every Texan has the right to choose whether they will wear a mask or have their children wear masks.
— Greg Abbott (@GregAbbott_TX) July 27, 2021
Dallas County Judge Clay Jenkins said there is nothing political about what the CDC is doing.
He said in a statement, “While this is frustrating news to many, it’s important to remember that the decisions of the CDC are not poll-driven decisions of politicians, but data-driven decisions of scientists who have prepared their entire adult lives to advise us in this moment. I strongly recommend that vaccinated people follow the advice of the CDC and that businesses likewise require masks for their customers. Customers who are unwilling to wear a mask could be served curbside or in some other manner. Trust is important with our employees and our customers and this is a time for us all to come together.”