Arkansas’ Republican Governor Admits Mistake on Mask Mandates as Cases Soar: ‘I Wish That Had Not Become Law’

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With Covid-19 cases surging in his state, Gov. Asa Hutchinson (R-AR) wishes he could take back the ban on local mask mandates that he signed into law.

The governor indicated his about-face at a briefing on Tuesday. A reporter questioned Hutchinson on the legislation he signed in late April forbidding local officials from implementing mandates.

“Do you regret it now?” The reporter asked, of Hutchinson signing. “Was it a bad decision?”

Hutchinson cited the state’s then-improving Covid outlook, as well as a likely override from the
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