Donald Trump has yet to explain why he abandoned his personal practice of not wearing a face mask, but now that he has, the president wants everyone to know it.
Monday, Trump tweeted a black-and-white image of himself with a mask on that likely was taken July 11 during his visit to Walter Reed National Military Medical Center.
“We are United in our effort to defeat the Invisible China Virus, and many people say that it is Patriotic to wear a face mask when you can’t socially distance. There is nobody more Patriotic than me, your favorite President!” Trump said in the tweet.
Trump Mocked Biden for Wearing a Mask
Trump’s reluctance to follow the advice of medical experts and wear a mask during the coronavirus pandemic has political observers wondering what caused him to change his mind.
After all, Trump mocked presidential challenger Joe Biden earlier this year for wearing a mask.
And Trump famously said in April about mask-wearing: “… sitting in the Oval Office behind that beautiful Resolute Desk … I think wearing a face mask as I greet presidents, prime ministers, dictators, kings, queens. I don’t know, somehow I don’t see it for myself. Maybe I’ll change my mind.”
Finally, Trump has said that he didn’t need to wear a mask because he and those around him are tested frequently for COVID-19.
Polls Show Biden Leading Trump
Perhaps advisers convinced him that it was important to model responsible behavior with America’s coronavirus death toll surpassing 141,000 and the economy reeling under the pandemic’s immense weight.
Or perhaps the latest polls inspired Trump to chart a new course.
The latest RealClear Politics average of major presidential polls shows Biden leading Trump by 8.6 percentage points nationally. Biden holds a double-digit lead in several polls conducted this month. And, the latest ABC News/Washington Post poll indicates that voters prefer Biden over Trump, 54%-34%, to handle COVID-19.
Whatever the president’s motivation, he’s removed the steam from one of the big culture war debates by indirectly saying it’s patriotic to wear a mask.