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Gov. Chris Christie: I Was Wrong Not to Wear A Mask at White House

Saying he was “fortunate” to have recovered from COVID-19, former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie acknowledge that he should have worn a mask while at the White House while in debate preparation with President Donald Trump as well as when he attended the Rose Garden ceremony for Supreme Court nominee Judge Amy Coney Barrett.

“I believed that when I entered the White House grounds, that I had entered a safe zone, due to the testing that I and many others underwent every day. I was wrong,” said Christie in a press statement released Oct. 15, just hours before President Trump and Democratic nominee Joe Biden held separate town halls at the same time. 

“I was wrong to not wear a mask at the Amy Coney Barrett announcement and I was wrong not to wear a mask at my multiple debate prep sessions with the President and the rest of the team,” stated Christie. “I hope that my experience shows my fellow citizens that you should follow CDC guidelines in public no matter where you are and wear a mask to protect yourself and others.”

Hospital Stay

The former governor revealed he was treated with Remdesivir and the Eli Lilly monoclonal antibody cocktail, stating he was “confident that all of those factors contributed to my good health today.” 

Christie thanked doctors and nurses in the intensive care unit of Morristown Medical Center for their “skillful and compassionate care” he experienced during his seven day stay at the hospital. 

Christie said his week-long stay days in isolation gave him “time to do a lot of thinking. Having had this virus, I can also assure…it is something to take very seriously.”

He noted that the ramifications are “wildly random and potentially deadly. No one should be happy to get the virus and no one should be cavalier about being infected or infecting others.” 

Tell Truth to the Public

Without mentioning his name, Christie appeared to take issue with President Trump’s decisions not to tell the public the severity of the coronavirus in February.

“But as a former public official, I believe we have not treated Americans as adults, who understand truth, sacrifice and responsibility, that I know them to be,” he said.

The two-term Republican governor of New Jersey argued there is a middle ground needed when it comes to fighting the virus, rejecting what he feels are two extremes— those who believe there is nothing to this virus and those who would continue to close down society.

Finding Middle Ground

“(They) are both wrong. This is not an either/or proposition. The public health consequences of ignoring the virus and the responsible safeguards that we need to take will be additional illness and death caused by COVID-19,” said Christie. 

He added “The public policy consequences of continuing to shut down or re-shut down our country will be further economic devastation to families, even more loss of education by our students and the continuing loss of life through the drug abuse, suicide and depression caused by taking away people’s ability to support their families.”

“There is another way.”

Christie wants the nation to continue to reopen with public officials advocating for every American to wear a mask in public, follow social distant guidelines and wash hands frequently throughout the day. He said taking these steps can bring the country together while pharmaceutical companies invent the therapeutics and vaccines to combat the coronavirus.

Unite the Country

“Reopen all those places which have taken the brunt of these shutdowns and allow our country to get back to a life where citizens can support their families using common sense,” he stated. “Even during a contentious election year, we must trust the American people with the truth.”

The former governor ended his statement on a hopeful note, hoping the public health tragedy will be used to bring the nation together. 

“It is never too late to start. It will take leadership that both challenges and trusts the American people. After all, we are America, the world’s greatest hope,” he said.

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