Fox & Friends host: “For some reason … masks have become political”

Steve Doocy praises Trump for saying “he’s all for masks,” not mentioning months of right-wing opposition to masks

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Citation From the July 2, 2020, edition of Fox News’ Fox & Friends

STEVE DOOCY (CO-HOST): President Trump yesterday afternoon, set the record straight on his stance on masks.


PRESIDENT DONALD TRUMP: I don't know if you need mandatory, because you have many places in the country where people stay very long-distance, you talk about social distancing. But I'm all for masks, I think masks are good. I would wear – if I were in a group of people, and I was close.


TRUMP: Oh, I would, I would — oh, I have. I mean, people have seen me wearing one.


DOOCY: OK, so he says he's all for masks. This amid the debate over whether the U.S. needs a nationwide mask mandate. So do we? Let's talk to Fox News medical contributor Dr. Janette Nesheiwat, who examines coronavirus patients every day here in New York City. Doctor, good morning to you.


DOOCY: For some reason, over the last couple of weeks, a month, masks have become political. But the science of masks is not. How do they work?

NESHEIWAT:  Yeah, so it's important to just understand and follow the facts and the data. Here's what we do know, we know that wearing a facial cloth covering or a mask can reduce the transmission of this virus from 17% down to 3%. What does that mean? That equates to saving about 35,000 lives over the next three months.


NESHEIWAT: So the data and the science shows that it works. You're not only protecting yourself, but you're also protecting others.

DOOCY: Right.

NESHEIWAT: That's more latest data that came out of the CDC. But I also believe that wearing a mask is not the only solution. It certainly is part of our best defense tools.

DOOCY: Right.

NESHEIWAT: But I think it's even just as important to practice that physical distancing. Make sure there's six to ten feet between you and someone else. Because you can have what's called a super-spreader. One person talking, sneezing, coughing, can spread this virus to another person, and then you can see an exponential rise in the number of cases. So, avoiding close contacts, avoiding confined spaces, avoiding crowds. All these collectively can help minimize the transmission of this virus, because we just saw now —

DOOCY: Right.

NESHEIWAT: — We're breaking records of 50,000 new cases in a day. So we certainly need to take action against that.

DOOCY: Sure. And the president was asked about a nationwide mask mandate —


DOOCY: — And he says, “I don't really think we one,” because, you know, there are a lot of spaces in the country where people are in the wide-open spaces, and there's nobody for five miles. So why should they then have to wear a mask? But when the president did make it clear when if he's in a tight area, he would wear a mask, which is great.


DOOCY: But, you know, you on the front lines at City MD — in fact, I drove by one of the offices out in New Jersey yesterday.


DOOCY: Every parking space was taken, obviously because people are interested in testing.


DOOCY: You see what's going on, and you talked about the increase. And then you've got all these stories about how states are kind of rolling things back. There's a story, [co-host] Ainsley [Earhardt] and I were just talking about out of Alabama, apparently, teenagers are going to parties to see who can get the virus first. What do we need to know about the coronavirus over the next 10 days to make sure that it doesn't go crazy?


DOOCY: Because the worry is over the 4th of July holiday, so many people could come into close contact that could just cause an explosion.

NESHEIWAT: Sure. We have to understand the virus is present. It's here, it's strong, and it's thriving. And it can affect anyone, from kids to senior citizens, even teenagers. The biggest outbreak that we're seeing right now is in those under the age of 44. So, yeah, some states like California, New York, we're scaling back and pausing on reopening. For example, Monday we're supposed to start with indoor dining. We're holding back on that because we see there's a lot of non-compliant New Yorkers, and we're concerned for close contact, confined spaces where you can see that transmission from one person to another. But understand, the virus is still here, know your risk, and it's still spreading.

DOOCY: Yeah.

NESHEIWAT: We say, act as if everyone is around is an asymptomatic carrier. And remember, we don't have a cure. There's no herd immunity. What we do have is nearly 130,000 deaths in this country.


DOOCY: Like wearing a mask. So —


DOOCY: — I think what I've learned in this particular segment, Doctor, is wear a mask —


DOOCY: — And over the 4th of July, social distance. You know, but people are going to be drinking things. If some scientist could possibly come up with a mask with a straw, that you could actually drink out of, that person will be the richest person in the world. Look out, Jeff Bezos. All right —

NESHEIWAT: Very creative thought.

DOOCY: All right, Doctor, thank you very much for joining us live.

NESHEIWAT: Thank you, Steve.