Presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden said Thursday that he would use federal power to require Americans to wear face masks in public — a move that would mark a significant intervention by the federal government and could see considerable pushback from states.
Biden made the comments in an interview with CBS affiliate KDKA, in which he spoke about what he thinks should be done to reopen the country from the coronavirus shutdown. He said that he wants to see greater use of masks.
“The one thing we do know, these masks make a gigantic difference. I would insist that everybody in public be wearing that mask,” he said. “Anyone to reopen, it would have to make sure that they walked into a business that had masks.”
The interviewer asked if he would use “federal leverage” to mandate mask-wearing,
“Yes, I would from an executive standpoint, yes I would,” he said, to which the interviewer asked if he would then be mandating mask-wearing.