South Carolina Gov. Henry McMaster on Wednesday pleaded with residents to wear masks so residents could resume sports in the fall.
“Let me make it very clear. Wear a mask and social distance now so we can enjoy high school and college football in South Carolina this fall,” the Republican governor tweeted.
While cities such as Charleston, Columbia and Greenville have enacted mask mandates, McMaster has said it would be “impossible” to enforce statewide.
On Wednesday South Carolina officials confirmed 24 new deaths due to coronavirus -- the most in a single day for the state yet -- bringing the death toll to 759 since early March. The state also reported 1,497 new cases Wednesday and 1,160 are currently hospitalized with the virus.
With the holiday coming up this weekend, McMaster pleaded with residents to avoid large gatherings.
“You have the opportunity to invest in some common sense with your friends and neighbors and remind them of what it is necessary for them to do,” McMaster said, according to The State.
Since late April, McMaster has gradually reopened restaurants, retailers, beaches, gyms and salons. He has said he does not plan to reimpose lockdown restrictions but has postponed reopening the remaining closed businesses until cases drop.
Republican leaders, including Sen. Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, Rep. Liz Cheney and House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, have all implored residents to wear masks in recent days, as Democrats ramp up pressure on President Trump to don a face covering to set an example.
President Trump on Wednesday said he is “all for” face masks. “I’m all for masks. I think masks are good,” Trump told Fox Business in an interview, adding that he would wear a face covering if he were in a “tight situation” with other people. He noted that he and those he comes in close contact with are regularly tested for the virus.
“I mean, I’d have no problem. Actually, I had a mask on, I sort of liked the way I looked,” Trump said, adding he thought he looked like the Lone Ranger.