Ohio won't shut its economy as COVID-19 cases spread, Lt. Gov. says

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Ohio’s Lt. Gov. Jon Husted says the state has no plans to shut down its economy, even as a highly-contagious variant of the COVID-19 virus spreads throughout the U.S.

Husted told FOX Business in an interview last week that while he is concerned about the spread of the variant, the state is not planning on implementing closures.

"We are not going to turn back to closures and shutdowns, we are going to promote the vaccine," Husted explained.

In Ohio on Monday there were nearly 900 new reported coronavirus cases.

About 60% of Ohio residents have received the COVID-19 vaccine, and the remaining 40% have the opportunity to do so, Husted noted.

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According to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the current seven-day moving average of daily new cases in the U.S. (66,606) is up 64.1% compared with the previous seven-day moving average.

The Delta variant accounts for more than 80% of new cases, according to the CDC.

The federal government, along with state leaders, are urging Americans to get the COVID-19 vaccine so that the situation does not worsen.

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Husted previously told FOX Business that the state’s decisions to not completely shut down certain sectors of its economy during the pandemic – like manufacturing and construction – helped drive its economic recovery. The state is one of a handful that had a budget surplus at the end of its fiscal year – money that enabled it to cut tax rates for residents.

He told FOX Business again on Friday that the Ohio economy is recovering "very quickly."

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As previously reported by FOX Business, Husted and Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine recently secured a legal victory in an ongoing battle over their decision to terminate the federal $300 jobless benefit. 

In addition to a broader complaint centered on eliminating the benefit, plaintiffs had requested relief in the form of a temporary restraining order and preliminary injunction, which was denied by a judge last week.

Several other states have been sued for ending the Federal Pandemic Unemployment Assistance program.

In Arkansas, Indiana and Maryland, judges ruled that the extra benefits needed to be reinstated while the lawsuits worked through the court system.

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