Butler County Sheriff Richard Jones said in an interview with CNN’s Brianna Keilar on Wednesday that he wears a mask himself and is “good with that.”
But the sheriff, who supports President Donald Trump, insisted, “I’m not going to be the mask police. Period.”
DeWine issued the mandatory mask order for seven counties designated as high risk for COVID-19, including Butler County, on Tuesday:
Today, I am announcing that @OHDeptofHealth will issue an order, effective 6:00 pm tomorrow, that will mandate wearing of face coverings in public in all counties that are designated Red Level 3 Public Health Emergency Alert. pic.twitter.com/cqbMqmajJ2
— Governor Mike DeWine (@GovMikeDeWine) July 7, 2020
Jones told Keiler that he was “confused” about the science regarding wearing masks, claiming “every week they change how you can catch” the virus.
“I wear a mask, but we shouldn’t have our government demand that we wear a mask, that we can’t work, that the economy’s shut down,” Jones said. “When this is all over and the studies come out, there will be more people who have died from not being able to go to a hospital, without being able to get their medication. This is my opinion.”
Keilar pointed out how public health experts believe wearing masks is a relatively inexpensive and easy way to mitigate the risk of the coronavirus.
Jones did admit, however, that he may change his mind on enforcing the order if Trump issues a federal mandate.
Check out the full interview here:
“I’m not going to be the mask police”: Butler County, Ohio, Police Sheriff Richard K. Jones says he won’t enforce the governor’s mandatory mask order starting tonight in his county. https://t.co/QCESCXertR pic.twitter.com/wflNzfF5rb
— CNN Newsroom (@CNNnewsroom) July 8, 2020
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This article originally appeared on HuffPost and has been updated.