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Republican breakfast is a mask-free zone

GOP Chair Merry Guy greets a guest at a Republican Party breakfast on Saturday. GOP Chair Merry Guy greets a guest at a Republican Party breakfast on Saturday.

LAUREL PARK — Democratic Gov. Roy Cooper’s oft-repeated advice to practice the “3 W’s” holds no sway with Henderson County Republicans.

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There was no sign of masks and little adherence to social distancing Saturday when party regulars met for a monthly breakfast meeting. Cooper’s mantra to Wait 6 feet apart, Wear a mask and Wash hands was greeted with a fourth W at the Dixie Diner: Widely ignore.
Party members said they can’t wear a mask when tucking into eggs and bacon and sipping coffee, although there was no mask wearing before or after eating and few ordered breakfast anyway. Technically, Cooper's order permits diners to remove masks while seated but requires masks when moving about.
Republican School Board candidate Robert Bridges wore a mask right up to the doorway. Upon seeing that no-mask was the apparent price of admission, he took the face covering off as he crossed the threshold.
“We are (wearing masks) out in the community, at church,” he said. “We’re going to have to wear ’em for a while I’m afraid.” Are they needed at the Republican breakfast? “I wouldn’t think so,” he said.
Newly appointed County Commissioner Daniel Andreotta cited a medical reason for his mask-free practice.
“I’m a hypoxia sufferer, so it’s an issue for me,” he said. “Matter of fact, I had a situation in my doctor’s office where the nurse told me to take it off and breathe so she could get a blood-oxygen level that she liked.”
Asked about the mask-free zone, party Chair Merry Guy joked that it was eating and drinking that prevented their use.
“Where’s my water?” she quipped as she grabbed her glass off a table.