The latest on the coronavirus pandemic and vaccines

By Jessie Yeung, Zamira Rahim, Kareem Khadder and Ed Upright, CNN

Updated 0115 GMT (0915 HKT) March 5, 2021
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3:03 a.m. ET, March 4, 2021

It’s "inexplicable" that US states are lifting restrictions right now, Fauci says

From CNN Health’s Lauren Mascarenhas

Dr. Anthony Fauci attends a press conference the White House on January 21, in Washington, DC.
Dr. Anthony Fauci attends a press conference the White House on January 21, in Washington, DC. Mandel Ngan/AFP/Getty Images

It’s “inexplicable” that some US states are pulling back on restrictions as Covid-19 continues to infect tens of thousands of Americans every day, said Dr. Anthony Fauci on Wednesday.

Texas and Mississippi moved this week to end state-wide mask mandates. 

“It just is inexplicable why you would want to pull back now,” Fauci told CNN.
“I understand the need to want to get back to normality, but you're only going to set yourself back if you just completely push aside the public health guidelines -- particularly when we're dealing with anywhere from 55,000 to 70,000 infections per day in the United States,” he added. “That's a very, very high baseline.” 

Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, said the administration’s guidance about pandemic precautions is not arbitrary.

"We know that these interventions work. It's very clear,” Fauci said. “When you implement them, you see the cases go down. When you pull back the cases go up.”