President Joe Biden has proven right out of the gate that symbolism will be a big part of his administration, but he’s also proven that following the rules he’s so quick to set for others is not quite as important.
Early in the day Wednesday, Biden signed an executive order mandating face masks on federal property, as well as on interstate public travel, yet there he was hours later standing at the foot of the Lincoln Memorial sans a mask.
Even more troubling than the clear double standard was the reaction by White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki when Fox News’ Peter Doocy asked about the inconsistent message Biden was sending, as the president’s spokesperson dismissed concerns by saying there are “bigger issues” to worry about.
In responding to Doocy’s question, which included the Biden family at one point also not wearing masks, Psaki called him “Steve” as she offered up a flimsy excuse — this being the reporter’s father.
“[Biden] was celebrating an evening of a historic day in our country, and certainly he signed the mask mandate because it’s a way to send a message to the American public about the importance of wearing masks, how it can save tens of thousands of lives,” she said, adding. “We take a number of Covid precautions, as you know, here in terms of testing, social distancing, mask wearing ourselves, as we do every single day.”
In a follow up, Doocy pressed on the issue, “But as Joe Biden often talks about, it’s not just important the example of power, but the power of our example — was that a good example for people who were watching who might not pay attention normally?”
The older Biden grandkids, plus Ashley Biden in a chic tux, take pictures at the Lincoln Memorial. pic.twitter.com/P0C57DooyX
— Jennifer Epstein (@jeneps) January 21, 2021
“Well, Steve, I think the power of his example is also the message he sends by signing 25 executive orders, including almost half of them related to Covid,” Psaki said, again calling Doocy by the wrong name. “The requirements that we’re all under every single day here to ensure we’re sending that message to the public. Yesterday was a historic moment in our history. He was inaugurated as president of the United States, he was surrounded by his family. We take a number of precautions, but I don’t think — I think we have bigger issues to worry about at this moment in time.”
Readers may recall that Joe Biden certainly didn’t seem to think so not so long ago:
— Conservative News (@BIZPACReview) January 16, 2021
The same night Biden ignored his “100-day masking challenge” order requiring masks and social distancing in federal buildings, on all federal land, and by federal employees and contractors, and on airlines, trains, and transit systems interstate traveling, he took to Twitter to advocate for wearing masks.
“Wearing masks isn’t a partisan issue — it’s a patriotic act that can save countless lives,” Biden tweeted. “That’s why I signed an executive order today issuing a mask mandate on federal property. It’s time to mask up, America.”
Unless you’re a member of the Biden family.
Here’s a quick sampling of responses to the story from Twitter:
Translation on Psakis comment: “Why aren’t you asking me about the colors of Air Force One, you peasant?”
— Dean (@digitaldean) January 22, 2021
Doesn’t NOT abiding to his own order kind of negate that message to the American people, though? Kinda seems like a ‘rules for thee but not for me’ thing…
— Rochester Josh (@JashUKnowAndLuv) January 21, 2021
So good to see Jen Psaki back as the White House spokesperson. She really did provide some genuine moments of hilarity in the Obama days with her genuine lack of knowledge on important subjects. I have no doubt she will provide many comic moments in the days to come.
— TheBlogMire (@theblogmire) January 21, 2021
She never answered the question!!!! Kayleigh would’ve got crucified by the liberal media if she responded like that!!!!!
— Dr. Jason Coleman (@jcolemandc) January 22, 2021
So they’re saying we don’t need to mask for celebrations? Got it!
— Merkin’s Revenge (@hobbes16) January 21, 2021
If you are celebrating – you are exempt from wearing a mask 💁🏻♂️
— Igor Schatz (@Copernicus2013) January 21, 2021
So the mandate is to “send a message to the American people that is for them” but not apparent for the President when he’s celebrating. Time to party y’all.
— Jezebelle (@luvvielist) January 21, 2021
We’ve been told for almost a year now that we’d be responsible for killing others if we don’t wear a mask so exactly what are the bigger things they have to worry about than potentially killing others via no mask worn? Photo ops?
— AP (@ac_piper) January 22, 2021
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