The government’s own coronavirus-prevention advice is that people should wear face coverings “in public settings where other social distancing measures are difficult to maintain”.
The Mayo Clinic itself requires all patients and visitors to its medical centers to wear a mask or face covering.
VP Pence’s visit came on the same day that the US coronavirus caseload topped one million and the number of deaths surpassed 57,000.
President Donald Trump has himself previously said he has no plans to wear a mask.
The vice-president defended his decision to flout hospitals rules as necessary in order to meet with staff and patients.
He said: “As vice-president of the United States, I’m tested for the coronavirus on a regular basis, and everyone who is around me is tested for the coronavirus.
“And when the CDC issued guidelines about wearing a mask, it was their recognition that people that may have the coronavirus could prevent the possibility of conveying the virus to someone else by wearing a mask.
“And since I don’t have the coronavirus, I thought it would be a good opportunity for me to be here, to be able to speak to these researchers, these incredible healthcare personnel, and look them in the eye and say thank you.”
According to news website Axios, Mike Pence has never once worn a mask while in public since the pandemic began while continuing to travel throughout the country.
A Mike Pence aide was the first White House member to test positive for the virus in late March.
Former Vice-President Joe Biden appeared to
announce his candidacy for the 2020 presidential election, before immediately
Joe Biden made the slip while addressing 1,000 Democrats at a dinner in his
home state of Delaware.
The democrat said his record was the most progressive “of anyone
running for the United-” before correcting himself and saying,
“anybody who would run”.
The audience stood up and chanted “run Joe run”, while the
76-year-old crossed himself and said: “I
didn’t mean it!”
Addressing party brokers and leaders in the city of Dover, Joe Biden said
that it was time to restore the country’s “backbone”, but that they
needed political consensus to move beyond what he called today’s
“mean”, “petty” and “vicious” political
“I’m told I get criticized by the
new left,” Joe Biden said, referring to a group of popular new
left-wing Democrats that includes congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez.
“I have the most progressive record of
anybody running for the United- “
The former vice-president then corrected himself, saying: “Anybody who wouldrun.”
As the diners rose to their feet and
chanted “run Joe run”, Joe Biden laughed and insisted: “I didn’t mean it!”
“Of anybody who would run,” he continued.
“Because folks, we have to bring this country back
VP Joe Biden has been awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the highest US civilian honor.
President Barack Obama praised Joe Biden for his “faith in your fellow Americans, for your love of country and your lifetime of service”.
The award comes as both men prepare to leave office when Donald Trump is inaugurated on January 20.
The vice-president has said he plans to stay active in Democratic Party politics.
A visibly emotional Joe Biden stood by as President Obama heaped praise on what he called the “best possible choice, not just for me, but for the American people”.
According to the New York Times, the medal was awarded with distinction.
Image source NBC News
That additional honor has been reserved in recent administrations for just a handful of recipients, including Pope John Paul II.
Barack Obama joked that the internet would have one last chance to mock the pair’s “bromance”.
Joe Biden said he was “part of the journey of a remarkable man who did remarkable things”.
The vice-president said that he had had no idea the award was coming.
“I had no inkling. I thought we were coming over to Michelle for you, Jill and Barack and I and a couple of senior staff to toast one another and say what an incredible journey it’s been.
“Mr. President, you got right the part about my leaning on Jill but I’ve also leaned on you and a lot of people in this room.
“Mr. President, I’m indebted to you. I’m indebted to your friendship. I’m indebted to your family.”
Barack Obama said that Joe Biden’s career was “nowhere close to finished” both at home or abroad.
The vice-president has said he plans to work on policy issues at institutes at the University of Delaware and University of Pennsylvania, and continue his efforts tackling cancer, which claimed his son Beau in 2015.
Joe Biden gave an hour-long interview with media outlets on January 12 in which he strongly criticized Donald Trump for his condemnation of the US intelligence services.
“It is really very damaging in my view to our standing in the world for a president to take one of the crown jewels of our national defense and denigrate it,” he said.
“It plays into, particularly now, the Russian narrative that America doesn’t know what it’s doing.”
However, Joe Biden was full of praise for his successor, Mike Pence, saying he had sent him memos on how to handle certain situations.
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