President Donald Trump on Monday said at the White House that Americans had learned a lot about wearing masks to prevent the spread of the coronavirus.
“They’ve learned about face masks,” Trump said. “The good and the bad, by the way. It’s not a one-sided thing, believe it or not.”
The president was likely referring to past guidelines shared by the White House Coronavirus task force about wearing masks.
In the past, Dr. Anthony Fauci and Dr. Deborah Birx have both spoken about the positive and negative effects of wearing a mask.
“We don’t want people to get an artificial sense of protection because they’re behind a mask,” Dr. Birx said in April, noting that wearing a mask was not a substitute for washing hands and socially distancing.
Dr. Fauci has previously explained to reporters that since he was tested for the virus and found to be negative, there was no reason for him to wear a mask that day at a press briefing.
Trump pointed out his own staff and cabinet members who were all wearing masks, after the vice president’s press secretary Katie Miller tested positive for the virus on Friday.
When asked if he required them to wear a mask, he replied, “I required it, yes.”