Gov. Tate Reeves’ daughter tests positive for COVID-19

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Eric J. Shelton/Mississippi Today, Report For America

Gov. Tate Reeves answers questions during a press conference concerning the coronavirus pandemic.

One of Gov. Tate Reeves’ three daughters tested positive for COVID-19, the governor tweeted on Tuesday afternoon.

“She feels OK, but could still use prayers! Please pray for her momma too!” Reeves tweeted. “Our entire family will be getting tested again and isolating for the time being.”

Earlier in the day, Reeves’ office abruptly postponed a scheduled Tuesday press conference, where the governor was expected to address the state’s sharp increase in COVID-19 cases.

Reeves on Sept. 30 lifted a statewide mask mandate — making Mississippi the first state to rescind such a mandate — that he had issued on Aug. 4, and he relaxed restrictions on social gatherings. Since then, cases have risen.

This week, Mississippi’s average number of daily COVID-19 cases surpassed 900 for the first time in three months and has continued to climb. 

Tuesday’s jump of 933 cases brings the rolling average to 947 daily cases – only 20 days of the entire pandemic have reached this threshold. The jump also resulted in a 42% increase in average new cases over the last week — the 26th largest increase since the pandemic began, comprising the only jump that large not in the March/April or June/July case surges. 

The recent case surge also totaled more than 6,600 weekly cases for the state, or about 223 per 100,000 residents — the most since early August when peak summer cases were just beginning to decline.