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Texas Bars Must Shut Down Again

Gov. Abbott also orders limits on restaurant dining as cases continue to spike
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Jun 26, 2020 10:40 AM CDT
Texas Closes Down Its Bars Again
A sign on a clothing store reminds customers to wear masks Thursday, June 25, 2020, in Houston.   (AP Photo/David J. Phillip)

The governor of Texas ordered the closing of all bars again and scaled back restaurant dining Friday in the biggest retreat yet by any state, as the number of confirmed new coronavirus cases per day in the US hit an all-time high of 40,000, per the AP. Republican Gov. Greg Abbott had pursued up to now one of the most aggressive reopening schedules of any state. “It is clear that the rise in cases is largely driven by certain types of activities, including Texans congregating in bars,” he said. “The actions in this executive order are essential to our mission to swiftly contain this virus and protect public health.” Abbott also has shifted on urging people to wear masks. "Every Texan has a responsibility to themselves and their loved ones to wear a mask, wash their hands, stay six feet apart from others in public, and stay home if they can," he said, per KHOU11.

Meanwhile, the number of confirmed new infections in the US per day soared past the previous high of 36,400, set on April 24, according to the count kept by Johns Hopkins University. While the increase is believed to reflect, in part, expanded testing, experts say there is ample evidence the virus is making a comeback, including rising deaths and hospitalizations in parts of the country, especially in the South and West. Arizona, Florida, and Arkansas are among the states that have been hit hard like Texas. Overall, deaths from the coronavirus are down to around 600 per day, compared with about 2,200 in mid-April. Despite the rise in cases, some experts have expressed doubt that deaths will return to that level, because of advances in treatment and also because a large share of the new infections are in younger adults, who are more likely than older ones to survive.

(More Texas stories.)

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