Former New Jersey governor and Donald Trump ally Chris Christie is calling for people to wear masks and wants the president to spread the message about the importance of facial coverings in battling the novel coronavirus.
While speaking with ABC News’ George Stephanopoulos, the video of which can be viewed on YouTube, Christie opened up about his first-hand experience with the deadly disease.
He was hospitalized in the intensive care unit for nearly a week after he fell ill with COVID-19. Since recovering, he has been public about the need for people to adhere to the recommended guidelines, initially saying that he regretted not wearing a mask.
Christie has long been an advocate of mask use, but he chose not to while preparing Trump for his first debate against opponent Joe Biden. He also decided not to wear a mask at a White House event in the Rose Garden confirming Amy Coney Barrett as Trump’s Supreme Court nominee, as The Inquisitr previously reported.
Friday morning, he criticized Trump’s performance last night for not going further during his Thursday town hall to encourage Americans to use facial coverings, as Mediaite further reported.
“You know, I heard the president say last night that he has no problem with masks. I think we should be even more affirmative about it. That’s why I put out the statement I did,” he said. “We need to be telling people that there is no downside to you wearing masks, and in fact there can be a great deal of upside.”
He added that a mask is one of the best ways for the public to help one another, but that the government needs to be direct in explaining that there are still many unknowns about the virus and that wearing face coverings can help.
“It was a mistake,” he said about not using a mask, particularly since he struggles with asthma. “But I let my guard down and it was wrong.”
Christie explained that he had been careful for months to avoid the disease by keeping a mask on and washing his hands.
“I let my guard down for a couple of days inside the White House grounds and it cost me in a significant way,” he added.
When asked if he had tried to speak to Trump about his opinion, Christie said that they had talked on the phone a few times since he was diagnosed and that he’d been clear in the past about following health guidelines.