President Joe Biden was asked on Tuesday why he wore a mask outside to announce that fully vaccinated Americans generally no longer need to wear a mask outside.
The moment: Biden emerged from the White House and walked over a sunny lectern before removing his face mask to address the press.
- “Starting today, if you’re fully vaccinated, and you’re outdoors … and not in a big crowd, you no longer need to wear a mask,” Biden said from the sunny White House grounds, echoing an update to CDC COVID-19 guidelines earlier in the day.
The question: NBC News White House correspondent Peter Alexander wondered of Biden, who is fully vaccinated: “What message were you sending by wearing a mask outside alone?”
“By watching me take it off and not put it back on until I got inside,” Biden replied.
The president then returned to the White House without putting his mask back on.
- It was a rare instance of Biden not wearing a mask in public during the pandemic — he even masked-up for last week’s virtual U.N. climate summit.
- No one has ever contracted the virus through the internet.