At a press conference in Bozeman on Tuesday, Governor Steve Bullock and Head Bobcat Football Coach Jeff Choate teamed up to promote the wearing of masks or cloth face coverings to reduce the spread of coronavirus.

They introduced a Public Service Announcement featuring Choate and Grizzly Head Football Coach Bobby Hauck on the virtues of masking up entitled ‘Mask Up Montana’.

Bullock still did not take the opportunity to introduce a statewide mandatory masking order, but rather called on Montanans to mask up voluntarily.

He was asked about those who consider being forced to wear a mask to be ‘a violation of their civil rights’ by a Missoula TV reporter.

“The virus isn’t political,” said Bullock. “Wearing a mask is being protective of those around you. That’s what you’ve seen in red states and in blue states that being protective not only been a mask ordinance struck down, but to encourage people not to make this a political food fight.”

Bullock then referenced a call earlier in the day with national leaders in his role as governor.

“I was on another call earlier today with the Vice President (Mike Pence) and the Coronavirus Task Force at the federal level where it was made clear that we are living under a public health emergency,” he said. “Not just in Montana, but across the nation and we all have to take personal responsibility that we’re taking the steps to protect one another.”

KGVO asked Governor Bullock if a decision has yet been made to make a mandatory masking order statewide, and Coach Jeff Choate stepped in with this comment.

“This strikes a chord with me,” said Coach Choate. “I think this is one of the reasons why both Coach Hauck and I have gotten behind this. I don’t know what the core values are of the University of Montana football program, but I would guess that somewhere in there, there’s at least a reference to the word ‘accountability’. I think that’s exactly what the Governor is talking about here, is that there’s a certain level of accountability here. We shouldn’t have to tell people to do the right thing. We do the right thing because it’s the right thing to do.”


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