President Trump came up with a brand new COVID-related falsehood on Wednesday during a campaign rally in Arizona, where he baselessly claimed that people in California are forced to wear a “special mask” that cannot be removed “under any circumstances.”
Obviously, it goes without saying that this is absolutely not true.
“In California, you have a special mask. You cannot under any circumstances take it off. You have to eat through the mask,” Trump said. “It’s a very complex mechanism, and they don’t realize those germs, they go through it like nothing. They look at you with that contraption and they say that’s an easy one, I’m going right through with the food.”
“Now, how about California, though, where you’re supposed to eat with the mask, can’t take it off,” he continued. “You see people and boy, you know, when you have spaghetti and meat sauce, that mask is not looking — you walk out, it looks like you got into a fight with [UFC President] Dana White.”
This is false. There is no “special mask” that Californians have that somehow no other state has, and Californians are not forbidden from removing masks “under any circumstances.” And the state’s guidance for restaurants and bars clearly states that guests should wear face coverings “when not eating or drinking.”
The California Department of Public Health’s guidance on face coverings also states that “persons who are seated at a restaurant or other establishment that offers food or beverage service, while they are eating or drinking, provided that they are able to maintain a distance of at least six feet away from persons who are not members of the same household or residence” are exempt from wearing masks.
So no, you aren’t required to shovel your spaghetti through your mask while you’re eating in California.
The comments are just one of the dozens of incorrect or untruthful statements about COVID-19 Trump has advanced during the election season, such as his claim that the U.S. is “rounding the corner” on the pandemic. In reality, the country is experiencing a dangerous surge in cases, and more than 227,000 people have died.
Watch the clip from Trump’s rally below, or here.
TRUMP: "In California, you have a special mask. You cannot under any circumstances take it off. You have to eat through the mask. Right, right, Charlie? It's a very complex mechanism. And they don't realize those germs, they go through it like nothing." pic.twitter.com/SG2nF2FsrI
— Aaron Rupar (@atrupar) October 28, 2020