Trump wears face mask in public for first time during coronavirus pandemic

“When you’re in a hospital, especially… I think it’s expected to wear a mask,” the president said after months of refusing to wear one in public.

As the coronavirus pandemic has surged in the U.S. — with over 3.2 million confirmed cases and much more than 134,000 deaths — several GOP members have already come out urging individuals to wear masks, adding that it should be a concern of health, not politics.

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“Unfortunately, this simple lifesaving practice has become part of a political debate that says: If you’re for Trump, you don’t wear a mask. If you’re against Trump, you do,” Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee Chairman Lamar Alexander, R-Tenn., said at a coronavirus hearing in late June.

“That is why I have suggested the president should occasionally wear a mask even though there are not many occasions when it is necessary for him to do so. The president has millions of admirers. They would follow his lead.”

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“Everyone should just wear a damn mask,” Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., told reporters last month.

Trump has sent mixed messages concerning the wearing of masks, saying that it might be appropriate to wear them when indoors and in close proximity to others. But he has also known as out reporters for wearing masks during press briefings, saying they certainly were only doing this to be “politically correct.”

The only other time Trump reportedly wore a mask was during a private tour of a Ford plant in Michigan.

The Associated Press contributed for this report.

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