Pence criticized for not sporting face masks at Mayo Clinic

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Vice President Pence got here beneath fireplace for not sporting a face masks throughout his go to to the Mayo Clinic in Minnesota on Tuesday.

On April 13, the world-renowned medical middle had introduced a coverage requiring all sufferers or guests to convey their very own face masks. The middle mentioned if sufferers or guests didn’t have a face masks, they’d be supplied with one, to adjust to pointers from the Facilities for Illness Management and Prevention (CDC).

The clinic tweeted — then later deleted — this tweet: “Mayo Clinic had knowledgeable @VP of the masking coverage previous to his arrival immediately.”

Pence addressed the controversy and informed reporters that whereas he agrees with the CDC pointers about sporting masks to include the unfold of coronavirus, he and everybody round him is examined for the virus commonly.

“When the CDC issued these pointers, it was their recognition that individuals that will have it might stop transmitting by sporting a masks,” the vp mentioned. “Since I don’t have it, I believed it could be a very good alternative to be right here, communicate to those guys and look them within the eye.”

When he was requested concerning the message it might ship, Pence reiterated that he’s examined commonly and the CDC says masks solely stop the unfold of the virus.

Some Democrats took goal on the vp over his choice to not put on a face masks.

“In Pence’s go to to the Mayo Clinic, he was attempting to indicate us how ‘powerful’ he’s — however simply confirmed his vanity, lack of concern for others, and vainness,” Rep. Tulsi Gabbard, D-Hawaii, tweeted.

“When you do not put on a masks, particularly contained in the Mayo Clinic, you aren’t being courageous,” mentioned Sen. Brian Schatz, D-Hawaii. “You might be displaying that you simply assume the principles do not apply to you. And you might be setting a harmful instance by ignoring specialists.”

Video reveals Pence showing to be the one one with no masks when he met with a Mayo worker who has recovered from COVID-19 and is now donating plasma. He was additionally maskless when he visited a lab the place Mayo conducts coronavirus exams.

Pence was additionally the one one to not put on a masks throughout a roundtable dialogue on Mayo’s coronavirus testing and analysis packages, with contributors together with Meals and Drug Administration (FDA) Chief Stephen Hahn, prime Mayo officers, Minnesota Gov. Tim Walz and Rep. Jim Hagedorn, R.-Minn.

The Related Press contributed to this report.

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