Mike Pence refused to wear a mask during a visit to the Mayo Clinic today, violating its policy as he visited a facility with severely ill patients highly vulnerable to coronavirus.
From NBC News:
Vice President Mike Pence went on a tour of the Mayo Clinic's coronavirus testing labs Tuesday — and ignored the prestigious Minnesota hospital's rules that all occupants wear a mask.
"Mayo Clinic had informed @VP of the masking policy prior to his arrival today," the clinic tweeted while Pence was still inside meeting with doctors and patients. The tweet was later deleted.
A reporter who accompanied Pence on the tour said he was the only person seen inside the facility without a face covering. Photos and video of his tour posted on social media showed Pence meeting with several doctors and at least one patient.
Pence is mirroring Dear Leader Donald Trump who has also refused to wear a mask, Politico notes, yet “many local officials view the use of masks as crucial to reopening the economy."
Pence gave this excuse for not wearing a mask:
Pence, via pooler @glubold, on why he didn’t wear a mask at the Mayo Clinic pic.twitter.com/c8B31NebzU
— Seung Min Kim (@seungminkim) April 28, 2020
But as The New York Times points out, he could contract COVID-19 between tests. Also, public experts say the tests are not infallible.
Mayo Clinic treats some of the sickest patients in the world and they are just the people our own federal government says need to take extra precautions.
So for all that talk about “safely reopening the economy,” Pence would rather look good for his boss and the camera than to model good behavior and do everything he can to keep Americans safe.