Would A National Mask Mandate Be Obeyed?

Has anyone out there wondered what might happen if Biden does indeed become president and he issues a nationwide mask mandate? How many states will tell der Bidengaffer to “Sod off, Swampy”?

I know of at least one: South Dakota Governor Kristi Noem.

As former Vice President Joe Biden proposes a nationwide lockdown and a national mask mandate in response to resurgent coronavirus cases in several states, at least one Republican governor is promising she will not comply.

In a statement made to the Argus Leader, a South Dakota newspaper, Gov. Kristi Noem's office said that Biden, as president, would lack the authority to impose a nationwide mask mandate on state governments.


Though Biden cannot constitutionally compel state governments to adopt a mask mandate, senior advisers on his presidential transition team reportedly say the presumptive president-elect will begin contacting governors and prominent mayors asking for local governments to impose mask requirements. Currently, 33 state governments have some sort of mask requirement for people who go out in public.

My state is unlikely to impose heavy mask mandates since they didn’t last time. The state and the municipalities issued mask mandates this past spring for those entering state or municipal buildings, something well within their purview, but for the most part didn’t requires masks across the board. Businesses had the right to require their personnel and customers to wear masks if they entered their buildings. Again for the most part the state didn’t order them to do so. The only exception were restaurants and bars/pubs, once they reopened after the initial lockdown. (Indoor seating wasn’t allowed and many restaurants switched over to pickup and delivery service during the lockdown. When they reopened for service most seating was outdoors, with towns easing liquor license restrictions to allow them to serve alcohol outdoors, something that usually requires additional endorsements.)

How will other states react should a national mask mandate come to be? I figure many of the Blue states will likely fold and do what der Bidengaffer tells them to do., assuming the haven’t already told their subjects to wear masks under penalty of fines and/or arrest. Some of the Red states will refuse. The rest of the Blue and Red states are a toss-up.

The same will be likely if Biden tries to order a lockdown. (Not that I think that he’d be foolish enough to order one, but one can never tell.) Many states will choose to ignore such a mandate, even under threat of losing federal funds, seeing it as an unconstitutional grab for power...because it would be.

Lockdowns have also been shown to be ineffective for stopping/slowing the spread of coronavirus. But they are quite effective at damaging the economy and destroying small businesses, but little else.

Hopefully neither mandate will ever come to be.