Texas Governor Greg Abbott (R) admitted during a private call with lawmakers that reopening the economy would spread the coronavirus even as he publicly announced that he would end an executive stay-at-home order. The news was first reported by The Daily Beast; a spokesperson for Abbott confirmed the call is authentic.
“How do we know reopening businesses won’t result in faster spread of more cases of COVID-19?” Abbott asked during a Friday afternoon phone call with members of the state legislature and Congress. “Listen, the fact of the matter is pretty much every scientific and medical report shows that whenever you have a reopening—whether you want to call it a reopening of businesses or of just a reopening of society—in the aftermath of something like this, it actually will lead to an increase and spread. It’s almost ipso facto.”
“The more that you have people out there, the greater the possibility is for transmission,” Abbott continued.
You can listen to a recording of the call HERE.
Abbott made the remarks on May 1, the same day he allowed certain businesses in his state to reopen “with limited occupancy.” At the time Abbott lifted the order, he received congratulations from President Donald Trump, whose administration continues to face heated criticism for its coronavirus response.
Texas to open businesses in phases beginning Friday. Great job being done by @GregAbbott_TX
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) April 28, 2020