Iowa governor won’t budge on masks even as virus deaths rise

Iowa News

In this Aug. 7, 2020 photo provided by the Iowa Falls Times Citizen, Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds greets people at the Hardin County GOP Sweet Corn Feed in Eldora, Iowa. Reynolds scoffs at calls for a statewide mask order, calling them “feel-good” actions, and refuses to let city officials enforce local mandates, even as the small, largely rural state maintains one of the highest COVID-19 positivity rates and has topped 1,200 dead. (Matthew Rezab/Iowa Falls Times Citizen via AP)

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — As coronavirus deaths push past 1,200 and cases continue to rise, Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds stands firm in her opposition to requiring masks or authorizing local cities and counties to enforce face covering mandates widely viewed by medical professionals and scientists as an effective way to slow COVID-19 spread.

Reynolds encourages Iowans to wear masks but says orders are not enforceable. She’s been photographed recently at GOP events hugging and talking closely with others without a mask but claims she does wear one and says photo snapshots aren’t reflective of her practice.

Community virus spread continues to be high in some counties which lead to a government recommendation of a statewide mask mandate, but Reynolds has declined to enact one.

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