Rep. Louie Gohmert, R-Texas, says masks should only be used by people who have COVID-19, and he is not a fan of GOP Gov. Greg Abbott's new statewide mandate requiring face coverings.
"As far as I know, this is the first time in American history when we have punished or restricted people who are not sick," Gohmert told Newsmax TV's "Greg Kelly Reports" on Thursday night.
"It's always in the past, if somebody had a disease that was easily spread, then that's where the emphasis was implied."
Abbott earlier Thursday said the order applies to all counties in the state with more than 20 confirmed COVID-19 cases.
"COVID-19 is not going away," the governor said in an announcement published on his social media accounts. "In fact, it's getting worse."
Violators will be issued a warning and a $250 fine if they defy the order a second time.
Texas reported 8,076 new cases Wednesday, the highest one-day total in the state since the start of the pandemic.
Gohmert said he does not wear a mask because of sinus issues.
"Masks really complicate things," he said. "I've been tested numerous times. I don't have it [COVID-19].
But, he added, "if I get it, I will wear a mask nonstop to try to protect anybody that I get around."
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