Masks

Masks not required in White House, even after Trump COVID-19 diagnosis: official

  • A senior official told the Associated Press that the White House will not require face masks, even after President Donald Trump’s COVID-19 diagnosis.
  • The official said that wearing a mask or face-covering is a “personal choice.”
  • Top public health experts have repeatedly urged Americans to wear masks, touting them as the most powerful tool against the virus. 
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A senior Trump administration official on Friday said masks will not be required in the White House, even after President Donald Trump was diagnosed with COVID-19, the Associated Press reported.

The official, speaking on the condition of anonymity, told AP that face coverings are “a personal choice.”

The White House did not offer a comment when contacted by Insider. 

There’s a wide body of evidence that masks play a crucial role in preventing the spread of COVID-19, and top public health experts have been urging Americans to wear them for months. 

“We have clear scientific evidence they work, and they are our best defense,” Dr. Robert Redfield, the head of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, told senators in mid-September. “I might even go so far as to say that this face mask is more guaranteed to protect me against Covid than when I take a Covid vaccine.” 

“Anybody who has been listening to me over the last several months knows that a conversation does not go by where I do not strongly recommend that people wear masks,” Dr. Anthony Fauci, the nation’s top expert on infectious disease, said in a recent interview on ABC News’ “Start Here” podcast.

On top of repeatedly downplaying the threat of COVID-19, which has killed over 207,000 Americans, Trump has repeatedly flouted recommendations to wear a mask or face-covering. “I don’t agree with the statement that if everybody wears

‘Everything’ White House Task Force Adviser Who Sided With Trump Over Masks Says ‘Is False,” CDC Director Tells Colleague

Members of the White House’s coronavirus task force don’t always see eye to eye, and Dr. Robert Redfield, director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), isn’t keen on comments the newest addition has been making.



Robert R. Redfield wearing glasses and looking at the camera: CDC Director, Dr. Robert Redfield, testifies during a US Senate Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions Committee hearing to examine Covid-19, focusing on an update on the federal response in Washington, D.C., on Wednesday. On Friday, Redfield told a colleague during a phone call that "everything" Dr. Scott Atlas says "is false."


© Alex Edelman/ POOL/AFP/Getty
CDC Director, Dr. Robert Redfield, testifies during a US Senate Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions Committee hearing to examine Covid-19, focusing on an update on the federal response in Washington, D.C., on Wednesday. On Friday, Redfield told a colleague during a phone call that “everything” Dr. Scott Atlas says “is false.”

Redfield, who has been a member of the task force since its inception, told a colleague during a September 25 phone call that “everything” Dr. Scott Atlas says “is false.” Atlas was added to the task force in August, and Redfield warned a colleague during the phone conversation, which was overheard by NBC News, that he was misleading President Donald Trump with data about mask efficacy, herd immunity benefits and who is at risk.

Atlas contradicted Redfield’s sworn testimony last Wednesday that the data shows more than 90 percent of the U.S. population is still susceptible to the new coronavirus. Atlas said during a briefing that same day that Redfield “misstated something” and added that the CDC’s state-by-state data “is old.” Atlas also said immunity to the infection is not “solely determined by the percentage of people who have antibodies” but also by cross-immunity from other infections.

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“So the answer is no, it is not 90 percent of people that are susceptible to the infection,” Atlas said, adding that people are “supposed to believe the science and I’m telling you the science.”

Redfield and Atlas also broke on the usage of masks.