As national political news remains in a state of oddly arrested development as we wait for Donald Trump’s frivolous lawsuits to at last finish their business of getting laughed out of courtrooms for Waukesha to Las Vegas, it was uncomfortably easy to miss the news.
With Governor Greg Abbott and Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick more intent to stoke Trump’s baseless claims of illegality surrounding the 2020 elections than to do their day jobs, earlier this week Texas became the first state to hit a tragic milestone when we surpassed one million diagnosed coronavirus infections since the pandemic began.
It quite literally did not and does not have to be like this. Rather than rededicating themselves and our state government to battling this deadly pandemic, Abbott took the time this week to jump on a radio show and pointedly refused to rule out a potential 2024 presidential bid.
And Patrick? He’s been trying to entice reports of voter fraud by dangling a million-dollar bribe for information. Of course, this comes despite the Department of Homeland Security issuing a memo that concluded the 2020 elections were the safest in our nation’s history. But who are you going to believe, facts or Dan Patrick’s soulless lies?
Over the last seven days, Texas has averaged more than 7,000 new cases and 99 deaths per day due to COVID-19 according to data from the Texas Department of State Health Services. More than 19,000 Texans have died since the pandemic began to sweep across the state.
And so, because your Governor and his second in command won’t do it, we are again asking you to be vigilant. We know it can be hard to think about missing a family gathering over the Thanksgiving holiday, but families should carefully review the case data and trends in their home county and make informed and safe decisions.
If you can continue working from home and self-isolating as much as possible please do so. Wear your mask whenever you’re in public, and wash and sanitize your hands frequently. If you haven’t yet, please consider getting your flu vaccination.
The final weeks of 2020 may be the worst of the pandemic. Please do everything you can to take care of yourself, your family and those around you. We’ll make it through this together.
Photo: Dan Tian/Xinhua via Getty Images