Gov. Evers issues new mask mandate after GOP repeal

MADISON, Wis. — Gov. Tony Evers has issued a new statewide mask mandate less than an hour after the Wisconsin Assembly voted to throw out the old order.

Executive Order #105 and Emergency Order #1 establish a public health emergency and will require face coverings in public places. Both orders are effective immediately.

Evers said in a video message Thursday that his priority is keeping people safe and that wearing a mask was the most basic way to do that.

“If the Legislature keeps playing politics and we don’t keep wearing masks, we’re going to see more preventable deaths, and it’s going to take even longer to get our state and our economy back on track,” Evers said. “We’re going to keep putting people first, we’re going to keep listening to the science, and we’re going to keep working to save lives so we can get through this pandemic together.”

Republicans who voted to repeal the order said Evers was exceeding his authority by issuing new public health emergencies rather than having the Legislature approve extensions.

The Wisconsin Supreme Court is weighing a case that could settle the issue.