Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan said he has no plans to reimpose pandemic lockdowns amid concerns over surging infection rates.
In a conversation with Fox News anchor Bret Baier aired Sunday, Hogan underscored that his administration would be focusing on COVID-19-related hospitalizations and deaths. Although Maryland’s case and death data continue to face disruption after a server outage, hospitalizations are at their highest since spring 2021.
“Look, we are concerned about the rising cases. We’ve got hospitalizations up about 150% over the past two weeks, and we’re taking steps to provide more support for our hospitals, and we’re putting more into testing,” Hogan told Baier.
The governor said the extra COVID cases contributed to the current issue and that his administration has remained concerned about the omicron variant.
“I would say, in the next couple of days, omicron is going to be the dominant variant in our state, and we are anticipating, over the next three to five weeks, probably the worst surge we’ve seen in our hospitals throughout the entire crisis.”
Hogan also slammed the decision by the Prince George’s County school board to shift back to virtual learning amid an increase in positive tests.
He added that shutting down the school system after documented struggles with distance learning would be outrageous and wrong.
As for mandates, Hogan said he expected the courts to block vaccine mandates and claimed that orders weren’t effective — a controversial statement alongside conflicting data on federal worker and military mandate effectiveness.
“I’m focused on convincing people that this is a great way to keep yourself and your family and your neighbors safe, but mandates aren’t working. They’re sort of having the opposite effect,” he said.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.