Ohio’s governor on Sunday said wearing a face mask should be a public-health issue, not a partisan one.
“ “This is not about politics. This is not about whether you’re liberal or conservative, left or right, Republican, Democrat.” ”
During an interview Sunday morning on NBC’s “Meet the Press,” Gov. Mike DeWine, a Republican, emphasized the importance of following health guidelines amid the coronavirus pandemic.
“We wear the mask, and it’s been very clear what the studies have shown, you wear the mask not to protect yourself so much as to protect others,” he said. “And this is one time when we truly are all in this together. What we do directly impacts others.”
DeWine’s comments echoed those of North Dakota Gov. Doug Bergum, another Republican, who last week called the face mask debate a “senseless dividing line” as he urged residents to “dial up your empathy and your understanding.”
“The governor is right. The governor is spot on,” DeWine said Sunday.
Dr. Deborah Birx, the head of the White House’s coronavirus task force, said on “Fox News Sunday” that “there’s clear scientific evidence” that wearing a mask significantly reduces the spread of COVID-19.
“And out of respect for each other, as Americans that care for each other we need to be wearing masks in public when we cannot social distance. It’s really critically important,” she said.
President Donald Trump has been criticized for his refusal to wear a face mask in public settings, and Vice President Mike Pence later admitted he was wrong when he did not wear a mask during a visit to the Mayo Clinic.
Scott Gottlieb, the former chief of the Food an Drug Administration, told CBS News’ “Face the Nation” on Sunday that the country’s elected officials have to lead by example.
“Governors, elected leaders should be setting a strong example on what kind of behavior we should engage in,” he said, because if that leads to more careful behavior, “it will facilitate a successful reopening, getting back to the important things.”