The Biden campaign was quick to call out President Trump after he finally wore a mask publicly after months of refusing to do so on Saturday night.
During a visit to wounded service members at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center on Saturday night, Trump visibly wore a mask for the first time following months of expressing his reluctance to comply with mask wearing requirements amid surging coronavirus cases throughout the country.
The move came after several prominent Republicans, including Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY), urged the public to wear masks despite Trump and Vice President Mike Pence refusing to commit to issuing a nationwide mask mandate even after encouraging the public to adopt the practice.
The President told reporters on Saturday ahead of his visit to the medical center that he’ll “probably have a mask.”
“I think when you’re in a hospital especially in that particular setting, where you are talking to a lot of soldiers, people that in some cases just got off the operating table. I think it’s a great thing to wear a mask,” Trump said on Saturday. “I’ve never been against masks but I do believe they have a time and a place.”
Shortly after news broke of Trump wearing a mask during his hospital visit, staffers for his re-election campaign roundly praised him for it.
— Brad Parscale (@parscale) July 11, 2020
— Boris Epshteyn (@BorisEP) July 11, 2020
Joe Biden is finished. pic.twitter.com/cYjerzBBay
— Jason Miller (@JasonMillerinDC) July 11, 2020
The Biden campaign called out the President not long after, however.
Biden campaign director for rapid response Andrew Bates issued a scathing statement against Trump in reaction to finally wearing a mask in public in a statement shared with TPM on Sunday.
“Trump spent months ignoring the advice of medical experts and politicizing wearing a mask, one of the most important things we can do to prevent the spread of the virus,” Bates said. “Rather than taking responsibility and leading, he wasted four months that Americans have been making sacrifices by stoking divisions and actively discouraging people from taking a very basic step to protect each other.”
Bates added that the former VP “has led by example from the start” and if elected as President he “will make decisions informed by science to protect the American people and defeat the virus.”
Several other Biden campaign staffers criticized the President as well in a series of tweets.
When the child finally does that thing you’ve been asking him to do👇🏾 https://t.co/4UvczSX70s
— Symone D. Sanders (@SymoneDSanders) July 11, 2020
Our Adult Son President remembered not to spread or catch an infectious respiratory disease today. Is this leadership??
— Rob Flaherty (@Rob_Flaherty) July 12, 2020