Missouri's governor refused to enact a mask mandate — now he has tested positive for COVID-19

Missouri's governor refused to enact a mask mandate — now he has tested positive for COVID-19
Missouri Gov Mike Parson, then a state representative, during testimony at a Missouri Senate Ag Committee hearing. Photo taken Januaryy 26, 2011. Photo courtesy of MoHorizonNews via Flickr.

Republican Gov. Mike Parson has been a rather outspoken about the need to not worry too much about this COVID-19 pandemic thing. His general incompetence as a governor is pretty well known around these here parts. In March when even the worst president in the history of presidents acknowledged that the 2019 novel coronavirus was an actual real problem, Parson and his wife were out and about not social distancing or wearing masks. About a month ago, he went on St. Louis radio to tell everyone that though over 1,000 Missourians had died from COVID-19, “we gotta move one.” And one of the first things to do was get kids back in school, in person, in classrooms, with little to no ventilation. “These kids have got to get back to school,” Parson told Cox. “They’re at the lowest risk possible. And if they do get COVID-19, which they will — and they will when they go to school — they’re not going to the hospitals. They’re not going to have to sit in doctor’s offices. They’re going to go home and they’re going to get over it.”


On Wednesday, reports began coming out that the governor needed to make a statement concerning his and his wife’s health. It was leaked that Teresa Parson had tested positive for COVID-19. Recording a statement that was streamed online, Parson told his constituents that he and his wife were “fine.” Parson then explained that Teresa had shown “some symptoms” and they got tested. Her test came back on Wednesday as positive for COVID-19. Gov. Parsons said that he was also tested and that the “preliminary result” was “a positive test.” He said that result was still awaiting confirmation later in the day but that they would be “taking all precautions moving forward.”

Gov. Parson was supposed to hold a debate this coming Friday against Democratic challenger Nicole Galloway, but that event has been canceled. Missouri has seen a steady rise in cases as the governor has done very little to promote the kind of public health initiatives one would need to combat the coronavirus pandemic. His challenger has made this a big part of her platform running against Parson. Galloway told reporters that she hoped the governor’s wife had a “quick and fast, safe recovery,” and reminded the public to take the virus seriously.

Gov. Parson finished his video statement by offering up this public health advice: “Do the best you can to take care of yourselves, you know, social distancing, wear a mask, personal hygiene.”

This is interesting coming from the man who has been making all kinds of appearances amongst his fellow Missourians.

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The Kansas City Start reports that Missouri is dealing with almost 117,000 cases of the virus and just under 2,000 people dead. Last week, Missouri was checking the box for being the state with the fifth highest rate of cases per capita in the country.

There’s also the very serious possibility that a lot of Missouri’s top officials have been exposed to the virus.

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