White House Counselor Kellyanne Conway was confronted about President Donald Trump shifting his stance on mask-wearing.
During an appearance on Fox News’ “America’s Newsroom” Wednesday, Conway recalled Trump’s press briefing on Tuesday where he shifted his tone by telling Americans that the virus would get “worse before it gets better.” The president also urged people to wear masks where socially distancing is not a possibility.
Conway said, “I think for the president himself to provide that information to the public and to very humbly and forthrightly come forward and say, look, it’s going to get worse before it gets better, wear a mask, socially distance, do these things that are important.”
She continued, “And I would say to all these people out there who are resisting wearing a mask, listen, folks, it costs nothing, it takes two seconds and you’ll get your liberties back sooner if you wear your mask because things will open up faster.”
See Conway’s remarks below:
However, host Martha MacCallum interjected as she highlighted the difference in Trump’s rhetoric on Tuesday compared to the beginning of the pandemic.
“But, Kellyanne, I mean, you know, I guarantee that there are people at home who listen to that and say, why — why didn’t the White House have this message for all of us, you know, two months ago? Why — why now? Why wasn’t this, you know, pushed and emphasized and encouraged by the present back then where it might have made even more of a difference?”
Not deterred, Conway pressed forward with her argument. She went on to offer a comparison of the preliminary findings about coronavirus in contrast with what health professionals know now.
“The president did say in April, if people want to wear a mask, they should wear a mask,” Conway said. “We did have our health professionals early on saying it wouldn’t help. And … we know now that it would. We have additional studies.”
Conway continued, “I was in the Oval Office yesterday when Dr. Birx was briefing the president before he went out there and she said, look, we have these studies now that prove what we suspected, which is that masks help prevent you from spreading it.”
Despite Conway’s arguments, Trump previous mocking of mask-wearing contributed to the Republicans’ division on the importance of face coverings for public health, per The Washington Post.
The president also mocked reporters as he insisted it was a political stance as opposed to a public health initiative.
At one point, the president even retweeted a post mocking presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden for wearing a mask.
This might help explain why Trump doesn’t like to wear a mask in public. Biden today. pic.twitter.com/9l1gw1ljBE
— Brit Hume (@brithume) May 25, 2020
As of Wednesday afternoon, the United States has more than 4 million coronavirus cases as the virus continues to impact dozens of states in the U.S.
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