NEWS & ANALYSIS

North Dakota House Passes Bill Banning Face Masks


Over the last year, face masks have become part of our daily routine. In most major cities across the country, they’re even required while walking the streets. 

But, North Dakota has had enough and is ready for life to get back to normal. 

The North Dakota House of Representatives just passed a bill – 50 to 44 – banning state and local governments, businesses and schools from enforcing mask mandates. 

The bill’s sponsor, Jeff Hoverson, called the initial mandate “diabolical silliness,” BizPacReview reports. 

“The mask is a part of a larger apparatus of a movement of unelected, wealthy bureaucrats, who are robbing our freedoms and perpetuating lies,” Hoverson said. “Our state is not a prison camp.” 

Many lawmakers in the state believe the bill will be met favorably in the North Dakota Senate, as no one in the House spoke up about it. 

According to BizPacReview, staff and other visitors are required to wear face coverings on the state Capitol grounds or in the chambers, but the rule is lightly enforced and mostly ignored. Lawmakers in the North Dakota Legislature  are now reconsidering a mask mandate for lawmakers, lobbyists and visitors. 

The state did not undergo a statewide mask mandate until last November, which was undoubtedly unpopular among lawmakers and constituents. 

The governor eventually lifted the statewide mask rule two months later because cases dropped more than 80 percent with the combination of protocols in place: limited people in restaurants, bars and venues, masks and social distancing. 

The bill, which also prohibits “making use of a face mask, shield or covering a condition for entry in education, employment, or services” will now head to the North Dakota Senate for a vote.