As a majority of states contend with rising coronavirus cases, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said a nationwide mandate to wear a mask is “long overdue.”
“My understanding is that the Centers for Disease Control has recommended the use of masks but not required it because they don’t want to offend the president,” Pelosi said Sunday on ABC’s “This Week.”
“The president should be an example. Real men wear masks,” she continued. “It’s not about protecting yourself, it’s about protecting others.”
On Thursday, the United States set a single-day record of more than 40,000 new cases, according to the CDC. There are more than 2.5 million cases and 125,000 deaths in the country, according to a Johns Hopkins University database. On Saturday, Florida reported a record 9,585 new cases; Arizona matched an earlier record of 3,591 new cases; and Texas topped 5,000 new cases for the fifth consecutive day.
At least 12 states have halted or rolled back aspects of their reopening plans. Govs Ron DeSantis of Florida and Greg Abbott of Texas reimposed some restrictions on Friday, such as shuttering bars.
Wearing a mask has increasingly become a political statement. President Donald Trump has made several high-profile appearances without a mask, including his return campaign rally in Tulsa, Okla. Former Vice President Joe Biden has said, if elected president, he would require the use of masks in public.