Idaho’s lieutenant governor banned mask mandates statewide — while the governor was on the other side of the country.
And, according to Gov. Brad Little’s press secretary, without the governor’s knowledge.
Lt. Gov. Janice McGeachin issued the executive order Thursday, which bars state entities and officials from requiring masks.
“Today, as acting Governor of the State of Idaho, I signed an Executive Order to protect the rights and liberties of individuals and businesses by prohibiting the state and its political subdivisions — including public schools — from imposing mask mandates in our state,” she wrote on Twitter.
This was news to Mr. Little.
“The lieutenant governor did not make Gov. Little aware of her executive order ahead of time,” Marissa Morrison Hyer, Mr. Little’s press secretary, told CNN.
When asked by the network whether Mr. Little, who is in Tennessee for the Republican Governors Association convention, had additional remarks about the order, Ms. Morrison Hyer referred to an earlier statement.
“The Governor’s Office is reviewing the Lt. Governor’s executive order. Governor Little has never put in place a statewide mask mandate,” the statement said.
While both are Republicans, Ms. McGeachin has often publicly clashed with Mr. Little over the coronavirus pandemic and the state’s handling of it.
Ms. McGeachin announced last week that she will run for governor in 2022. In Idaho, the governor and lieutenant governor are both elected in their own right, not as a ticket like the U.S. president and vice president.