Iowa governor won’t budge on masks even as virus deaths rise

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Kim Reynolds

Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds speaks during a news conference, Friday, Aug. 14, 2020, in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. The storm that struck Monday morning left tens of thousands of residents of Iowans without power as of Friday morning. (AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall)

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) – As coronavirus deaths push past 1,200 and cases continue to rise Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds stands firm in her opposition to requiring masks or authorizing local cities and counties to enforce face covering mandates widely viewed by medical professionals and scientists as an effective way to slow COVID-19 spread.

Reynolds encourages Iowans to wear masks but says orders are not enforceable. She’s been photographed recently at GOP events hugging and talking closely with others without a mask but claims she does wear one and says photo snapshots aren’t reflective of her practice.

Community virus spread continues to be high in some counties which lead to a government recommendation of a statewide mask mandate, but Reynolds has declined to enact one.

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