Debate Moderator: Officials Say Americans Will Wear Masks ‘Into 2022’

Moderator Kristen Welker of NBC News asks a question during the second and final presidential debate Thursday, Oct. 22, 2020, at Belmont University in Nashville, Tenn. (AP Photo/Morry Gash, Pool)
Morry Gash/AP Photo

Officials say Americans will be wearing masks and social distancing into 2022, moderator Kristen Welker said Thursday during the final presidential debate in Nashville, Tennessee.

“Let me follow up with you and because this is new information, you have said a vaccine is coming soon, within weeks now,” she told President Trump after asking how he would lead the country in the next stage of the coronavirus pandemic.

“Your own officials say it could take well into 2021 at the earliest for enough Americans to get vaccinated. And even then they say the country will be wearing masks and distancing into 2022. Is your timeline realistic?” Welker continued.

Trump replied that he believed his timeline would “be more accurate”:

I don’t know that they’re counting on the military the way I do, but we have our generals lined up, one, in particular, that’s the head of logistics. And this is a very easy distribution for him. He’s ready to go as soon as we have the vaccine, and we expect to have a hundred million vials. As soon as we have the vaccine, he’s ready to go.

Earlier this year, a Harvard study said social distancing “will likely be required until 2022 unless treatment or a vaccine becomes available to counter the spread of the infection caused by the novel coronavirus,” Breitbart News reported in April.

However, Trump said in September that at least 100 million doses of the coronavirus vaccine will be ready near the end of this year, according to Breitbart News.

“Hundreds of millions of doses will be available every month and we expect to have enough vaccines for every American by April,” he explained.


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