President Joe Biden will ask everyone to wear masks for his first 100 days

Biden Virtual Roundtable with Workers and Small Business Owners Impacted by COVID-19

Before the election, in the middle of October, Joe Biden and Donald Trump had competing townhalls on NBC and ABC. Biden’s ABC townhall was excellent, and all things considered, I do believe his performance that night helped solidify his lead in the polls. It was at that townhall where Biden was pressed on mask mandates and vaccines and what he would do about “ordering” people to wear masks if he became president. Biden was thoughtful, nuanced and reasonable. He acknowledged that it would probably be quite tricky for him (legally, realistically) to try to command a nationwide mask mandate, but he said he would do what he could to get every governor to issue mask mandates, plus he would lead by example, which is something Donald Trump has failed to do throughout the pandemic.

Well here we are not even two months later, and the pandemic has gotten significantly worse. 274,000 Americans have died from the virus, and America marked a grim new record this week: 2,804 coronavirus deaths in a single day. Donald Trump still refuses to say a word about the deaths or the enormous spike in cases over the past month. We’re up to over 14 million confirmed cases, with 200,000 new cases in the past week. Something must be done, especially given that we won’t get any kind of mass vaccinations completed until the spring/summer of next year. So President Biden is doing what he can: asking everyone to wear a damn mask.

President-elect Joe Biden told CNN’s Jake Tapper on Thursday that he will ask Americans to wear masks for his first 100 days after he takes office.

“Just 100 days to mask, not forever. 100 days. And I think we’ll see a significant reduction,” Biden told Tapper during his first joint interview with Vice President-elect Kamala Harris since winning the election. Biden said that where he has authority, like in federal buildings or in interstate transportation on airplanes and buses, he will issue a standing order that masks must be worn.

Biden also said he has asked Dr. Anthony Fauci to be a chief medical adviser and part of his Covid-19 response team when his administration begins next year. Biden said the conversation happened on Thursday afternoon. CNN reported earlier in the day that Fauci, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases and a member of President Donald Trump’s coronavirus task force, had a planned meeting with Biden’s transition team.

“I asked him to stay on the exact same role he’s had for the past several presidents, and I asked him to be a chief medical adviser for me as well, and be part of the Covid team,” Biden told Tapper.

[From CNN]

President Biden also promised that he too would take the vaccine, and he might even do so on camera, like Barack Obama, George W. Bush and Bill Clinton have promised as well (I believe the ex-presidents are probably working in tandem with Biden’s transition team, so no surprise).

I understand why Biden is saying this now, to prepare us, and give us time to get used to the idea of a grandfatherly mandate – nay, a REQUEST – to wear masks. But I also kind of think Biden could simply say all of this now, during the transition. Like, “I haven’t been sworn in as president yet, but let me ask every American to please, for the love of God, wear a mask whenever you leave your house.” Would it make a difference? I don’t know. There’s such a profound vacuum of leadership, I feel like Biden could fully step into the gaping hole and just start acting like the president now.

John Lewis Remembrance at the US Capitol

2020 Presidential Debate at Belmont University in Nashville, Tennessee

Photos courtesy of Avalon Red.

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32 Responses to “President Joe Biden will ask everyone to wear masks for his first 100 days”

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  1. Case says:

    I hope he does more than “ask.” And I really hope he considers a lockdown where necessary. Things are out of control and going totally unchecked right now.

  2. Snuffles says:

    I keep hoping that once Cheeto is officially out of the White House, Governors, Congress and Senators will be released from the curse and start acting sensibly when it comes to public health and this pandemic.

    Even if the spell isn’t broken, every single one of those Republican Governors who refused to mandate masks will probably be eyeballs deep in Coronavirus hospitalizations and deaths by January 20th they might finally have their come to Jesus moment then.

    • Msmlnp says:

      I’m in Texas. I doubt it. BIden can ask away. Abbot and company continue to undercut any attempt to bring this virus under control. Positivity rate is higher than 10% where I am and schools aren’t allowed to shut down per public health recommendations.

      • Mgsota says:

        I live in Arkansas and we’ve had a mask mandate from the beginning. I stay home as much as possible but when I’m out, everyone in my area seems to be complying. HOWEVER, I drove an hour south to pick something up at a mall down there and sooo many people were not wearing a mask. It was disgusting…I left in a hurry.

      • sassafras says:

        I used to give Abbott the benefit of the doubt, but no longer. As someone who has a physical impairment, I thought he might have some empathy or insight into how a virus might impact the elderly and immunocompromised. But nah. His actions with mayors and county judges in Harris and El Paso counties have been small, vindictive and short-sighted. Texas deserves so much better.

  3. Mia4s says:

    They’ve been mandatory where I live for 133 days. I’ve been able to shop, go to the hairdresser, go to appointments, go to the gym, and work (!!!!). We’re having a second wave now but nowhere NEAR elsewhere. Is it all the masks? Don’t know. Is it helping? Well as I look at other places without masks it sure seems to be. And that’s plenty for me!

    One idiot puts his explosive in his shoe, no one dies, and I’ve been taking my shoes off in airports for 19 years. 276,000 Americans die and even the tiniest temporary inconvenience for safety is AUGHHHHHHH NEVER! I wish this virus only killed the stupid people.

    • Anonymous says:

      @Mia4S Love this comment. We’ve change our ways every time an idiot tries to blow up a plane (like allowing ourselves to be subjected to body scanners) but wearing a mask for a couple hours is unthinkable.

      By the way, where do you live? My state is getting worse every day.

  4. Becks1 says:

    I wonder if he can tie federal aid to states with masks mandates.

    I honestly don’t get the reluctance on the part of governors to put mask mandates in place. Its such a little thing, relatively, that does SO MUCH to slow the spread of the virus. Why wouldn’t you, as a leader, want to do what you can to save the lives of people in your state?

    • Snuffles says:

      I know some states (like mine) are banning citizens from other states from coming into their state without getting tested or quarantining upon arrival. It states that are cooperating crack down on states that aren’t, that might encourage them. Especially if it affects business.

  5. PlannerGIrl33 says:

    @MIA4s What a horrific comment why would you wish death on anyone seriously?!

    • Msmlnp says:

      Please. This virus is largely driven by idiocy. My kids can’t go to school safely because people want to go to bars. Save the outrage for something that isn’t clearly hyperbole.

    • Lizzie says:

      I confess I said to Mr Lizzie that I don’t care if idiots won’t take the vaccine, maybe we will get it sooner. Not my finest Christian moment but I want my family to live long lives.

    • Mexicalidesi says:

      She didn’t. She said she wished deaths were *limited* to stupid people.

  6. lucy2 says:

    The shoes/airport analogy is great for this (and for many other issues too!) We’ve had a mask mandate here for a long time too, ever public place requires one, and most people are doing it without issue. Our numbers were lowered too after being hit hard in the beginning, but are creeping back up since some people can’t seem to give up stuff like parties and weddings.

    Like Snuffles said above, I too hope once trump is out, some of these other governors stop trying to kiss up to him and do what needs to be done. A few GOP have in the past few weeks – months too late of course.

  7. clomo says:

    Thank god he won. I have no problem with this. All the moronic trumpers will try to defy. Funny though, not just trumpers, fringe groups and religious people who aren’t necessarily trumpers but radical in their own way won’t do a simple thing for their country even though we follow thousands of other laws THIS one for some reason is a government control plot? Give me a break.

  8. Ellie says:

    I found out yesterday that my own brother back home is one of the idiots who refuses to wear a mask because of “his freedoms.” He thinks we’ll all get it anyway, so why bother. He also expects my elderly parents to watch his baby (for free) most days a week, and is apparently too stupid to realize it’s likely they could die if he gives it to them. He’s also entitled enough to be furious with me for not wanting to come home and meet his baby due to all of this. So please, I hope there are some kind of mandates. People clearly can’t be left to make these decisions for themselves.

  9. Nic919 says:

    I still don’t understand how so many millions of Americans voted for a monster who has made the pandemic so much more deadly on purpose, especially compared to the rest of the entire world. Other countries and regions are doing lockdowns with 2000 new cases a day much less 2000 deaths a day. This is close to a 9/11 happening daily. The level of global security theatre done for that one incident but nothing being done here at a national level is insane.

    The virus doesn’t care about party lines and it is insane that every state doesn’t have a mask mandate right now. I really feel for Biden because the level of stupidity of so many Americans will be hard to overcome. None of this should have been political. It is frankly evil that the GOP made it so.

    • clomo says:

      Yes, I knew Biden would win but I thought he would by more, these people are so brainwashed they only believe things if trump says so. More Americans need affordable college educations so when they vote they know what they are voting for. I am an immigrant from the U.K. and always felt the U.S. GOP were like those old muppets in the Dark Crystal, scary. American greed, non socialized medicine and the racism and disregard for the environment were the GOP, haters of gays and non Christians and half of the country.

  10. Marigold says:

    The stupid Trumper Covid deniers are already freaking out. They are the worst.

  11. Maggi says:

    Anti-maskers puzzle the crap out of me.
    I wonder if collectively sitting for 10 months in an ever-deepening bathtub of stress hormones has dissolved our capacity to co-exist in this profoundly uncertain society.
    Sometimes I rage at the self-centered stupidity of anti-maskers refusing to contain their own flying spitballs but sometimes, I can see a person who has lost all the things that matter and bloody well will not take a loss on the mask wearing.

  12. Nicole says:

    I love Uncle Joe. I always have. That is all.

  13. Lizzie says:

    Don’t let your guard down when we are so close to vaccines.

  14. HK9 says:

    Don’t ask make it law and give fines for those who break it.

  15. crooksandnannies says:

    I think masks should be mandated. But then, I also think standard vaccines should be mandated as well in general (mumps, measles, etc.) and have felt that way long before the pandemic. I don’t think people give valid enough reasons to jeopardize public health.

  16. L84Tea says:

    I actually don’t mind wearing the mask these days because it covers my brand new pandemic double chin.

  17. Amando says:

    In NY we’ve been required to wear a mask in public since April I think?? It makes a difference. Cases are rising, but it’s mostly due to the people gathering who are NOT wearing masks. I support Biden 100% on this. I also think aid should be withheld from states that do not require masks and other basic COVID precautions. We all need to be in this together.

  18. Vanesa says:

    Long time reader, first time commenting! :) I’m from New Zealand and we had our first lockdown in March for four weeks. Only essential businesses were allowed to be open for those four weeks and everyone had to wear a mask when out. With our supermarkets for example, you had to line up 2m apart, sign in via a contact tracing app and a lovely burly man would give you hand sanitiser when it was your turn to enter the supermarket. It’s frightening when you’re in it of course, but we have had no community transmission for the last few months, our only infected come from our borders. Our lives have returned to normal effectively and it’s beyond terrifying to see people protesting against the simplest of requests, wear a mask. Wear it for yourself, wear it for your family and friends, wear it for your community. The alternative is far too grim to think about.

  19. Nlala says:

    I’m in Melbourne, Victoria, Australia. We’ve just come out of a very long, strict lockdown and still wearing masks. The result is we have gone from hundreds of cases a day, to no new cases for the last 36 days. The proof is there. I so hope sanity prevails. I get the freedom issue of people not wanting to comply (I don’t agree with it though), but your freedom and your rights are worth nada if your dead. Hoping against hope America sees the numbers go down

  20. april says:

    This is slightly off topic, but I just talked to my sister and she said 36% of nurses said they will not get the Covid vaccine. I was shocked and then googled it, and it is true. I’m very upset about this.

  21. Savannah says:

    The biggest problem is large gatherings without masks. People aren’t ignorant – they just don’t care. Our society is at a low point. Trump derangement syndrome hinges on false “rights” and the assertion of liberty, for some. How about helping your fellow man and doing your duty as an American?