President Donald Trump fired back at Joe Biden's call for a national face mask mandate, saying his campaign opponent is "politicizing the pandemic" and does not understand law and executive authority.
"If the president has the unilateral power to order every single citizen to cover their face in nearly all instances, what other powers does he have?" Trump told reporters during the daily press briefing Thursday. "That's why he refused, Biden, to take questions. He couldn't answer any of them. He never takes questions.
"I take questions, he never takes questions. And you sort of wonder what's going on because they are not that difficult."
Biden and Kamala Harris made recommendations for a three-month national face mask mandate.
"He does not identify what authority the president has to issue such a mandate or how federal law enforcement could possibly enforce it, or why we would be stepping on governors throughout our country, many of whom have done a very good job and know what is needed," Trump continued.
"My administration has a different approach, we have urged Americans to wear masks, and I emphasized that this is a patriotic thing to do," he continued. "Maybe they are great and maybe they are just good, maybe they are not so good, but frankly, what do you have to lose?"
The authority for mask mandates lies in the states and with the governors, Trump stressed.
"I trust the American people and the governors want to do the right thing to make the smart decisions and Joe doesn't," Trump continued. "Joe doesn't know too much. Unlike the Biden approach, our approach is guided by science. That's why we are focused on protecting the high-risk Americans, why we are delivering effective medical treatments to dramatically reduce the fatality rate, and why we are developing a vaccine and therapeutics in record time.
"Sleepy Joe rejects the scientific approach in favor of locking all-Americans in their basements for months on end.
Trump also slammed Biden for using the pandemic to "score political points."
"To Joe, I would say stop playing politics with the virus, serious partisan politics, there's no place here," Trump said. "It's a shameful situation for anybody to try and score political points while we are working to save lives and defeat this pandemic.
"Americans must unite together and put politics aside and really unite for a common good."
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