Washington: US President Donald Trump said he won’t issue an order at the national level mandating the use of masks, even as the country has continued to break its single-day COVID-19 case record.
When asked during a Fox News interview on Sunday if he would consider issuing a national mask mandate to slow the spread of the virus, Trump said: “No, I want people to have a certain freedom and I don’t believe in that, no,” Xinhua news agency reported.
“I don’t agree with the statement that if everyone wore a mask, everything disappears,” the President added.
“Dr. (Anthony) Fauci said don’t wear a mask, our surgeon general — terrific guy — said don’t wear a mask. Everybody was saying don’t wear a mask, all of a sudden everybody’s got to wear a mask,” Trump said.
“And as you know, masks cause problems too. With that being said, I am a believer in masks. I think masks are good.”
Trump has been refusing to wear a mask himself since the pandemic hit the country earlier this year, citing his good health and frequent negative tests for the virus.
He was seen wearing a mask in public for the first time on July 11 while visiting Walter Reed National Military Medical Center in Bethesda, Maryland, some three months after the CDC recommended that Americans should do so because asymptomatic bearers of the virus could still transmit it to others.
After recording over 70,000 COVID-19 cases in the last 24 hours for a second consecutive day, the US currently accounted for the world’s highest number of infections and fatalities at 3,641,417 and 139,175, respectively.