Texas Gov. Abbott tests positive for COVID-19

Southwest

FILE: AUSTIN, TX – MAY 18: Texas Governor Greg Abbott. (Photo by Lynda M. Gonzalez-Pool/Getty Images)

AUSTIN, Texas (NewsNation Now) — Texas Gov. Greg Abbott has tested positive for COVID-19, according to a news release from his communications director, Mark Miner. He said Abbott is receiving monoclonal antibody therapy.

He is fully vaccinated and not experiencing symptoms, Miner wrote. He added the governor had been tested “daily” and this was his first positive result.

“Governor Abbott is in constant communication with his staff, agency heads, and government officials to ensure that state government continues to operate smoothly and efficiently,” the news release said. “The governor will isolate in the Governor’s Mansion and continue to test daily.”

Abbott has faced criticism for banning mask mandates and vaccine requirements in Texas, despite the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention calling for all school employees and students to wear masks this fall. All but nine of Texas’ 254 counties fall under the CDC’s guidance to bring back indoor masking.

Counties that defied Abbott recently lost in the state’s supreme court. Dallas and San Antonio counties instituted their own mask mandates, but the elected Republican justices who sit on the Texas Supreme Court struck them down temporarily pending a hearing.

Texas reported more than 11,500 patients hospitalized with the virus Sunday, the most since January.

Jeff Zients, White House coronavirus coordinator, said last week that Texas and Florida accounted for nearly 40 percent of new virus hospitalizations nationwide.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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