Biden Demands State Leaders Reimpose Mask Mandates, Stop Reopening Efforts
Issues call to governors and local leaders over return to normal life
Joe Biden is demanding that state and local leaders should reimpose mask mandates and halt efforts to return to normal life.
In a statement during a Monday press conference, Biden called on governors to pause their plans to reopen their states as he touted his administration’s efforts to combat the COVID-19 pandemic.
He highlighted the progress that is being made in getting America vaccinated, a process that began under President Donald Trump.
Democrat Biden failed to credit Trump for the vaccination drive, however.
Biden's remarks came after a bleak warning from CDC Director Dr. Rochelle Walensky.
Earlier in the day, Walensky said she has a “recurring feeling” of “impending doom.”
“We have so much to look forward to, so much promise and potential of where we are, and so much reason for hope, but right now I’m scared,” she said.
“So I’m speaking today not necessarily as your CDC director — not only as your CDC director but as a wife, as a mother, as a daughter to ask you to just please hold on a little while longer.
"I so badly want to be done," Walensky continued.
"I know you all so badly want to be done.
"We are just almost there but not quite yet.
"And so I’m asking you to just hold on a little longer, to get vaccinated when you can so that all of those people that we all love will still be here when this pandemic ends.”
Biden referenced the remarks that Walensky made, saying that America’s work was “far from over.”
He warned that the “war against COVID-19 is far from won” and that it was “deadly serious.”
“We could still see a setback in the vaccination program,” Biden said.
“And most importantly, if we let our guard down now, we could see a virus getting worse, not better.
"You know, as many people as we have vaccinated, we still have more Americans left to go.
"You know, we will administer more shots in March than any country on Earth.
"But even so, we have to give more shots in April than we did in March.
"Because we’re in the life and death race for the virus that is spreading quickly with cases rising again.
"New variants are spreading," Biden said.
"And sadly, some of the reckless behavior we’ve seen on television over the past few weeks means that more new cases are to come in the weeks ahead.”
Biden warned that Americans are “letting up” in the fight against COVID-19.
He later added that “I’m reiterating my call for every governor, mayor, and local leader to maintain and reinstate the mask mandate.”
“Please, this is not politics,” Biden claimed.
“Reinstate the mandate if you let it down.
"And business should require masks as well.
"The failure to take this virus seriously — precisely what got us in this mess in the first place — risks more cases and more dests [sic] — deaths.
"Look, as I do my part to accelerate the vaccine distribution and vaccinations, I need the American people to do their part as well.
"Mask up. Mask up. It’s a patriotic duty.”
When asked by a reporter if he thinks that “some states should pause their reopening efforts,” Biden responded, “Yes.”