Joe Biden says he will ask the American public to wear face masks during his first 100 days in office.
In an interview with CNN on Thursday, the President-elect told anchor Jake Tapper, “On the first day I’m inaugurated, I’m going to ask the public for 100 days to mask."
"Just 100 days to mask — not forever, just 100 days. And I think we'll see a significant reduction," he said, referencing the growing numbers of COVID-19 infections and deaths.
The former vice president also revealed that he asked Dr. Anthony Fauci, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases and a member of President Donald Trump's coronavirus task force, to serve "in the exact same role he's had for the past several presidents" when his administration begins next month.
"I asked him to be a chief medical advisor for me as well, and be part of the COVID team," Biden said.
Additionally, Biden said he would be "happy to" get the COVID-19 vaccine himself — once Fauci says it is safe — in order to show confidence in its effectiveness.
"People have lost faith in the ability of the vaccine to work," Biden said. "Already the numbers are really staggeringly low, and it matters what the president and vice president do."
President-elect Biden tells Jake Tapper he will ask all Americans to wear masks for the first 100 days after he takes office: "I think we'll see a significant reduction ... to drive down the numbers considerably" https://t.co/lQkT0HPc5h pic.twitter.com/PxIGzPjxP7— CNN Politics (@CNNPolitics) December 3, 2020
In response to news that former presidents Bill Clinton, George W. Bush and Barack Obama have all publicly said they would take the vaccine, Biden responded, “I think that my three predecessors have set the model as to what should be done, saying, once it's declared to be safe... then obviously we take it and it's important to communicate to the American people.”
Thursday on Twitter, Biden assured the public that he and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris “are going to ensure [the vaccine is] distributed equitably, efficiently, and free of charge to every American.”
The next day, he doubled down on his statement about taking the vaccine once it is deemed safe.