DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) – In response to a face mask mandate signed by Dallas County Judge Clay Jenkins Wednesday, Texas Gov. Greg Abbott and Attorney General Ken Paxton have filed a petition with an appeals court to stop the order.

The mask mandate was issued in Dallas County despite an executive order by Abbott that bans such orders. Jenkins said the continuing surge of COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations led to his decision to require masks inside school and businesses.

A district court judge in Dallas County had also issued a temporary restraining order late Tuesday evening on Abbott’s executive order.

Abbott and Paxton said the judge’s mandate violates the governor’s executive order. The two announced they are filing a mandamus petition in the 5th Court of Appeals.

“Under Executive Order GA-38, no governmental entity can require or mandate the wearing of masks,” Abbott said. “The path forward relies on personal responsibility—not government mandates. The State of Texas will continue to vigorously fight the temporary restraining order to protect the rights and freedoms of all Texans.”

“This isn’t the first time we have dealt with activist characters. It’s deja vu all over again,” Paxton said. “Attention-grabbing judges and mayors have defied executive orders before, when the pandemic first started, and the courts ruled on our side – the law. I’m confident the outcomes to any suits will side with liberty and individual choice, not mandates and government overreach.”

A temporary injunction hearing is set for Aug. 24 for the restraining order.

CBSDFW.com Staff