In a hypocritical violation of the coronavirus task force’s own guidelines, Vice President Mike Pence chose to forgo wearing a mask at the Mayo Clinic despite being asked to do so as everyone around him, including every doctor and a patient, were wearing masks of their own.

Pence visited the clinic on Tuesday to meet with medical personnel, and as the top member of the task force, he should have been wearing a mask, especially since he’s the vice president and he could very well pass it to Trump if he contracts it.

On second thought, go ahead and keep not wearing a mask, Mike. Let a patient cough in your face and then go breathe near Trump. You would be doing the United States and the world a favor.

Anyway, Pence failed to wear his mask because he complained that he wanted to talk clearly to the people around him. Of course, that’s not an acceptable excuse.

And Doctor Jonathan Reiner ripped Pence a new on for it during an interview on CNN.

“Well, so wrong. So tone-deaf,” Reiner began. “First of all, on one level, this is just another in a series of mixed messages that we have gotten from the White House about this crisis. We tell the public that we want you to wear a mask when you go out in public, and now the vice president shows up at a hospital and refuses to wear a mask. We saw today that JetBlue is going to require all passengers to wear masks, but yet the vice president of the United States goes to a hospital and doesn’t wear a mask.”

“I was in late last night for an emergency procedure and early this morning,” Reiner continued. “Every second in the hospital, I wore a mask. When we tell the community to wear a mask, we’re telling them to protect their neighbors, the old lady that lives next door, the man down the street. You wear a mask to protect the community. We want that message to be perpetuated by the president and the vice president yet they refuse to do so. I think it’s disgraceful.”

Here’s the video via YouTube:

Frankly, this could also be yet another effort by Pence to help Trump downplay the virus and the threat it poses. Trump desperately wants to re-open the country early, so Pence is trying to act tough so that Trump can claim that if Pence can walk around without a mask and somehow not get sick, then the American people should feel safe enough to go back to work. If they do, a deadly second wave of the virus could occur and kill even more people, especially since the first wave is not over yet.

This is not the right message to send and it’s as dangerous as suggesting people drink disinfectants to treat the virus. It is also an insult to every doctor, nurse, and other essential employee fighting COVID-19.

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