While the governor is away, Idaho lieutenant gov. bans mask mandates

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BOISE, Idaho (AP) — With the governor out of state, Idaho’s lieutenant governor issued an executive order banning mask mandates in schools and public buildings, saying the face-covering directives threatened people’s freedom.

Republican Lt. Gov. Janice McGeachin is acting governor while Gov. Brad Little is at the Republican Governors Association conference in Nashville, Tennessee.

He was expected to return Thursday evening.

Last week, McGeachin announced her run for governor, challenging the first-term incumbent Little.

McGeachin is on the far right of the political spectrum in the conservative state, and her order could bolster her support as a candidate for governor.

Little has never issued a statewide mask mandate, but some counties, cities and schools have done so.

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