As 200 million Americans have received at least one coronavirus vaccine, press secretary Jen Psaki punted a question on whether the White House would extend its call for Americans to mask up beyond 100 days.
“Is President Biden going to extend his call for Americans to wear masks beyond 100 days?” a reporter asked Psaki during her daily briefing.
“He is working and in discussions with our health and medical experts about what we need to do to get the pandemic under control, including providing clear guidance to the American public about what the benefits are of being vaccinated, including getting into communities and meeting people where they are. So I don’t have any update on that at this point in time,” the press secretary said.
President Biden when he first assumed office instituted a 100-day mask challenge to contain the spread of coronavirus. But that deadline is now fast approaching – a week away. The U.S. is currently seeing a 7-day average of just under 63,000 cases identified per day, down from about 250,000 daily during the January peak.
‘Should the CDC change its guidance right now that says that vaccinated Americans should be wearing masks when they’re outdoors or they’re outside in public?” the reporter also asked.
“We’re going to leave that to them to determine and to announce. And obviously, we would follow and abide by their guidance and certainly recommend that the American people.”
The U.S. has been inoculating about 3 million Americans per day for the past two weeks.
Republicans have been pushing for new guidelines for fully vaccinated people as a means to encourage people to get the jab.
Biden should “light a torch to it and burn his mask and say, ‘I’ve had the vaccine. I am now safe from this plague. If you’ll get the vaccine you can be safe too,’” Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., told Fox News Wednesday. “The burden of proof should be on the government to prove we’re spreading it . . . then we’ll listen to them. Instead, it sounds like fearmongering.”
The CDC has said that fully vaccinated Americans can safely gather indoors in small groups with other vaccinated people, without masks on. It also said that vaccinated people can travel safely within the country but should still wear a mask and social distance.