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Texas Governor Greg Abbott Tests Positive for COVID

Texas Governor Greg Abbott at the annual National Rifle Association convention in Dallas, Texas, May 4, 2018. (Lucas Jackson/Reuters)

Texas Governor Greg Abbott has tested positive for COVID, according to his office.

His administration is executing a contingency plan and taking all necessary steps to ensure the government’s continued functioning.

A statement on Abbott’s illness from his communications director reads, “Governor Greg Abbott today tested positive for the COVID-19 virus. The Governor has been testing daily, and today was the first positive test result. Governor Abbott is in constant communication with his staff, agency heads, and government officials to ensure that state government continues to operate smoothly and efficiently. The Governor will isolate in the Governor’s Mansion and continue to test daily. Governor Abbott is receiving Regeneron’s monoclonal antibody treatment.”

Prior to contracting the virus, Abbott had been vaccinated against the disease, which has re-appeared in numerous breakthrough cases in already inoculated individuals in recent weeks. According to the latest data released by the CDC, less than 0.01 percent of vaccinated individuals who have developed COVID breakthrough infections have experienced serious or fatal health complications.

“Governor Abbott is fully vaccinated against COVID-19, in good health, and currently experiencing no symptoms. Everyone that the Governor has been in close contact with today has been notified. Texas First Lady Cecilia Abbott tested negative,” the statement added.

Abbott recently followed in the footsteps of Republican Florida Governor Ron DeSantis in banning mask and vaccine mandates in public buildings and facilities, including schools. As in Florida, a number of localities challenged Abbott’s executive order in court. The governor threatened to levy financial penalties against local officials who defied the executive order in enforcing new mask mandates.

“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.”

While the original directive prohibited mandates, it did encourage mask use in areas with high transmission, per the CDC’s updated guidance.

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