Gov. Abbott says this is why he’s keeping COVID emergency declarations for now

The governor wants his orders on masks and vaccine requirements to be codified into law.

By Alexandra Hart and Wells DunbarJanuary 27, 2023 2:23 pm, ,

This week, Gov. Greg Abbott said in an interview on a talk show that he won’t end his public health disaster declaration, issued during the peak of the pandemic, until the Texas Legislature acts.

James Barragán, politics reporter for The Texas Tribune, said Abbott’s reasoning for keeping the declaration in place is clear. “He wants the Legislature to codify his mask bans and vaccine requirements into law before he lifts it,” Barragán said.

The Legislature could or could not act, but given its Republican majority, “it looks like that will probably happen.”

For more stories from the week in Texas politics, listen to our conversation in the audio player above.

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