'Hindsight is 20/20': Mask-free Myrtle Beach mayor wishes face coverings were mandated a month ago
MSNBC reporter speaks to Brenda Bethune in Myrtle Beach, SC (MSNBC/screen grab)

The mayor of Myrtle Beach, South Carolina on Wednesday said that she wishes she her city had mandated face masks weeks before COVID-19 cases surged in the state.

During an interview on MSNBC, Mayor Brenda Bethune responded to reports that hundreds of new coronavirus cases have been linked to trips to Myrtle Beach.

Bethune, who was not wearing a mask as she spoke to an MSNBC reporter, said that a mandate is "crucial" for public health.

"You know, hindsight is 20/20," she admitted. "Our hotels opened up about four weeks ago. I wish we had done it then but we didn't have the same issues as we do today. So, we are seeing increases in cases and I think we have to do this [mask order] tomorrow."

The mayor disputed the notion that trips to Myrtle Beach had caused the virus to spread.

"There's no way to determine exactly where everyone contracted the virus," she insisted, "or if people coming here brought it here. Our cases were well under control and when we opened back up to our visitors, that's when we started seeing those spikes."

"I'm not one to place blame on anyone," Bethune added. "I think we have to deal with the situation that we're given and placing blame doesn't help solve issues."

Watch the video below from MSNBC.