President Trump says he will not issue a national mandate requiring Americans to wear masks in order to slow the spread of the novel coronavirus.

“I want people to have a certain freedom and I don’t believe in that, no,” Trump said.

He told Fox News of his doubt on the efficacy of masks, noting that public health officials initially said that facial coverings were not necessary for healthy individuals, before later adding that he is a “believer in masks.”

“I don’t agree with the statement that if everyone wore a mask, everything disappears,” Trump said, referring to Wallace’s mention of the director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) saying that the country could get the virus under control in four to six weeks if everyone wore a mask.

“Dr. [Anthony] Fauci said don’t wear a mask, our surgeon general – terrific guy – said don’t wear a mask. Everybody was saying don’t wear a mask, all of a sudden everybody’s got to wear a mask,” Trump continued. “And as you know, masks cause problems too. With that being said, I am a believer in masks. I think masks are good,” the US president stated.

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