Former California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger (R) on Thursday lauded new California measures requiring residents to wear masks outside of their homes, saying that “anyone making it a political issue is an absolute moron who can’t read.”

The measures were released by the state health department Thursday as the state gradually reopens businesses amid the coronavirus pandemic. It calls for residents to wear face coverings when they are inside or in line to enter a public space, in addition to other settings.  

“This is 100% the right move,” Schwarzenegger tweeted. “This will help us beat this terrible virus. The science is unanimous - if we all wear masks, we slow down the spread and can reopen safely. It’s not a political issue. Anyone making it a political issue is an absolute moron who can’t read.”


Schwarzenegger also shared guidance from U.S. Surgeon General Jerome Adams calling for people to wear a cloth face covering when “you’re in public & it’s difficult to keep a distance,” as well as thorough hand-washing and other measures.

California Gov. Gavin NewsomGavin NewsomCalifornia at risk of losing out on hundreds of millions in federal rental assistance, auditor warns Schwarzenegger says Californians 'made the right decision' not to recall Newsom California dreaming did not become reality for Republicans MORE (D) in a Thursday statement said that “science shows that face coverings and masks work.”

“California’s strategy to restart the economy and get people back to work will only be successful if people act safely and follow health recommendations. That means wearing a face covering, washing your hands and practicing physical distancing,” he added. 

The mask requirement exempts children under two and people with medical conditions that do not allow them to wear the coverings.

California has confirmed more than 167,000 coronavirus cases as of Friday morning, with more than 5,000 deaths.