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Tennessee governor limits gatherings, resists mask mandate

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NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Tennessee Gov. Bill Lee as announced new social gathering restrictions while still refusing to implement a mask mandate despite pleas from front-line health care workers in a state experiencing the highest new cases per capita in the country.

Instead of a mask mandate, the Republican on Sunday signed an executive order limiting public gatherings to 10 people.

He called the state “ground zero” in the COVID-19 battle and urged Tennesseans not to gather with people outside their immediate households during the upcoming holidays.

His message comes just a day after Lee confirmed that his wife Maria had tested positive for COVID-19. Lee says he has tested negative but will remain in quarantine at the governor’s residence.

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