As Utah Issues Mask Mandate, These 13 States with GOP Governors May Follow Suit as COVID Cases Surge

Utah is the latest state to issue a statewide mask mandate, with COVID-19 cases spreading at an "alarming rate" across the state, Republican Utah Gov. Gary Herbert announced Sunday.

Just over a dozen other states, each of which has a Republican governor, could potentially be next in line to require masks statewide following a sharp rise in average daily new cases seen in recent weeks.

While some local authorities in several states have issued mask ordinances at a local level, 13 states have yet to issue a statewide mandate.

In the past two weeks, the average daily case count in most of these 13 states each reached their highest level since the outbreak began, according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University (JHU).

Here we take a closer look at these 13 states, each of which reported an increase in their average daily case tally over the latest 14-day period, according to JHU.

Daily case counts below reflect a seven-day moving average of daily new infections reported from October 26 to November 8.

Florida

  • Day 1 (October 26): 3,790.43
  • Day 14 (November 8): 5,693.50
  • Highest daily case count in 14-day period: 5,693.50 on November 8
  • Lowest daily case count in 14-day period: 3,756.57 on October 28

The average daily case tally Florida has been rising sharply since early October but has yet to reach the peak level seen in mid-July, when it peaked at 11,870 on July 14. The figure rose sharply from late May, after flattening out from late March, according to JHU.

Arizona

  • Day 1 (October 26): 1,082
  • Day 14 (November 8): 2,157.75
  • Highest daily case count in 14-day period: 2,157.75 on November 8
  • Lowest daily case count in 14-day period: 1,082 on October 26

The average number of daily new infections in Arizona has been increasing on a sharp incline from late September, after declining dramatically from early July. The figure peaked at 3,844 on July 3 and flattened out from late August to late September, according to JHU.

Georgia

  • Day 1 (October 26): 1,616.14
  • Day 14 (November 8): 1,656.50
  • Highest daily case count in 14-day period: 1,697.80 on November 7
  • Lowest daily case count in 14-day period: 1,495.14 on October 27

The average daily case count in Georgia has been increasing on a sharp incline since early October. But the figure remains at a much lower level than the peak recorded in late July, when it hit 3,747 on July 21. The average count flattened out from early April to early June before rising sharply through late July, according to JHU.

Tennessee

  • Day 1 (October 26): 2,710.43
  • Day 14 (November 8): 3,012.25
  • Highest daily case count in 14-day period: 3,099 on November 7
  • Lowest daily case count in 14-day period: 1950.86 on November 5

The average daily case count in Tennessee hit a record level on November 7 at 3,099, the highest since the outbreak began. The figure has been increasing on a sharp incline from early October after declining from late July. The figure remained flat from late March before rising from early June to late July, according to JHU.

Oklahoma

  • Day 1 (October 26): 1,101.43
  • Day 14 (November 8): 2,122
  • Highest daily case count in 14-day period: 2,122 on November 8
  • Lowest daily case count in 14-day period: 1,011 on October 28

The average case tally in Oklahoma rose sharply in the latest two-week period, with a record 2,122 reported on November 8, the highest since the outbreak began. The figure has been increasing from early June, after flattening out from late March, according to JHU.

South Carolina

  • Day 1 (October 26): 1,015.14
  • Day 14 (November 8): 1,204.50
  • Highest daily case count in 14-day period: 1,204.50 on November 8
  • Lowest daily case count in 14-day period: 1,006.86 on November 2

The average daily case count in South Carolina has been rising since late September but has yet to reach the peak level seen on July 14 when the figure hit 1,949. The figure remained flat from late March to late May before dramatically rising through mid-July, according to JHU.

Missouri

  • Day 1 (October 26): 1,785.39
  • Day 14 (November 8): 4,154
  • Highest daily case count in 14-day period: 4,154 on November 8
  • Lowest daily case count in 14-day period: 1,785.39 on October 26

The average daily case tally in Missouri also reached its highest level since the outbreak began, hitting 4,154 on November 8. The figure has been increasing since early June, rising on a sharper incline in the recent two-week period, after flattening out from March to early June, according to JHU.

Iowa

  • Day 1 (October 26): 1,602.43
  • Day 14 (November 8): 4,391
  • Highest daily case count in 14-day period: 4,391 on November 8
  • Lowest daily case count in 14-day period: 1,602.43 on October 26

The average daily case tally in Iowa hit its highest level since the outbreak began with 4,391 reported on November 8. The figure has been increasing throughout most of the outbreak, rising on a sharp incline from late October after flattening out for months since late April, according to JHU.

Nebraska

  • Day 1 (October 26): 980.71
  • Day 14 (November 8): 2,020
  • Highest daily case count in 14-day period: 2,020 on November 8
  • Lowest daily case count in 14-day period: 980.71 on October 26

The average number of daily new infections in Nebraska reached a record level in the past two weeks, hitting 2,020 on November 8, the highest level since the outbreak began. The figure has been rising sharply since early September, after flattening out since late April, according to JHU.

South Dakota

  • Day 1 (October 26): 997.57
  • Day 14 (November 8): 1,403
  • Highest daily case count in 14-day period: 1,403 on November 8
  • Lowest daily case count in 14-day period: 997.57 on October 26.

The average daily case count in South Dakota has been rising sharply since mid-August, after flattening out for months since late March. The figure reached a record high of 1,403 on November 8, the high level since the outbreak began, according to JHU.

Idaho

  • Day 1 (October 26): 878
  • Day 14 (November 8): 1,161.75
  • Highest daily case count in 14-day period: 1,187 on November 7.
  • Lowest daily case count in 14-day period: 820.57 on October 29

The average number of daily new cases in Idaho reached a peak of 1,197 on November 7, the highest level since the start of the outbreak. The figure has been climbing sharply since early September, after declining from mid-July and increasing since early June. The average count flattened out from March to early June, according to JHU.

Wyoming

  • Day 1 (October 26): 341.14
  • Day 14 (November 8): 566
  • Highest daily case count in 14-day period: 566 on November 8
  • Lowest daily case count in 14-day period: 341.14 on October 26

The average number of daily new infections in Wyoming reached a peak level of 566 on November 8, the highest it's been since the outbreak began. The average count has been rising sharply since early September, after flattening out for most of the outbreak from mid-March, according to JHU.

Alaska

  • Day 1 (October 26): 369.43
  • Day 14 (November 8): 492
  • Highest daily case count in 14-day period: 492 on November 8
  • Lowest daily case count in 14-day period: 369.43 on October 26

The average daily case count in Alaska hit a peak on November 8 at 492, the highest it's been since the outbreak began. The figure has been rising sharply since mid-September, after flattening out since late July and increasing from mid-June before then. The figure remained flat from March to mid-June, according to JHU.

Florida Donald Trump campaign event October 2020
Spectators at a campaign event for President Donald Trump held at the Orlando Sanford International Airport on October 12 in Sanford, Florida. The state is among 13 states with no statewide mask mandates where new cases were reported to have increased in recent weeks. Joe Raedle/Getty Images

The wider picture

The novel coronavirus has infected more than 50.5 million people across the globe since it was first reported in Wuhan, China, including more than 9.9 million in the U.S.

Globally, more than 1.2 million have died following infection, while more than 33 million have reportedly recovered as of Monday, according to JHU.

The graphic below, produced by Statista, illustrates the countries with the most COVID-19 cases.

covid19, coronavirus, statista,
A graph showing the countries with the most known COVID-19 cases, as of November 2. Statista