Texas Gov. Greg Abbott appeared on "Hannity" Monday to discuss his plan to open up the state's economy in the midst of the coronavirus pandemic, saying "safety first" is his mantra.

Earlier Monday, Abbot announced that effective May 1, retail stores, maills, movie theaters and restaurants will be allowed to reopen at no greater than 25 percent of normal capacity. If the number of coronavirus cases does not spike, those establishments could increase their capacity to up to 50 percent as soon as May 18.

"You've heard of Home Depot," Abbott told host Sean Hannity. "We have Home Depot in Texas, we have -- the largest grocery store in the state is H-E-B as well as Walmart.

"So they opened up at 25 percent capacity, these stores did. And they were able to provide the goods for their customers in ways that had distancing practices so that people remain safe," Abbott said. "So while those stores were open, we reduced the spread of the coronavirus. We know that all retail can open up. We need to get back to business, [and] allow everybody to sell their goods at 25 percent.


"We know that's not good enough, but if we can do this and prove that we can do it for two weeks, then we can take the next step and open up at 50 percent capacity," Abbott said. "And if we can continue to contain the spread, we can open up all the way one step at a time, making sure we put safety first."

Abbott compared this chapter in American life to the security challenges facing America after the Sept. 11, 2001 terror attacks.

"Just like we learned how to adjust after 9/11, we can learn how to adjust after this with some slight modifications," the governor said.


Abott also told Hannity that he is anxious to help get the Major League Baseball season underway. The start of the season has already been delayed for a month due to the pandemic.

"The good news is I've been talking to the Major League Baseball teams here in Texas and the program I tell you what, baseball is anxious to get going again," Abbott said. "We sure would like to see that happen here in Texas."