Doug Jones cuts pro-mask campaign ad: 'Our health depends on each other'

Sen. Doug Jones (D-Ala.) urged Alabamians to wear masks to stem the spread of the coronavirus in a campaign ad released Wednesday.

“The COVID crisis has shown how our health depends on each other, on our neighbors, on our loved ones, our coworkers,” Jones says in the 30-second spot over images of people donning masks.

“Wearing masks and social distancing is about protecting each other: our parents and grandparents, the friend who has diabetes or a heart condition we didn’t know about, the front-line workers who put themselves at risk, and so our small businesses open safely and get our economy moving,” he adds. “In Alabama, we do this for each other.”

ADVERTISEMENT

Jones is considered one of the most vulnerable Democratic senators heading into November, with both former Attorney General Jeff SessionsJefferson (Jeff) Beauregard SessionsThe 'pitcher of warm spit' — Veepstakes and the fate of Mike Pence FBI officials hid copies of Russia probe documents fearing Trump interference: book Tuberville breaks DC self-quarantine policy to campaign MORE and former Auburn University football coach Tommy Tuberville ahead of him in polling.

However, wearing masks to stem the spread of the coronavirus is broadly popular. Polling by Pew Research Center found that 65 percent of U.S. adults said they had worn a mask in stores or other businesses all or most of the time in the past month, and a survey from Fairleigh Dickinson University found that more than three-quarters of Americans support wearing masks inside along with other precautions such as performing mandatory temperature checks and requiring isolation for people who test positive.

Although President TrumpDonald John TrumpDeWine tests negative for coronavirus a second time Several GOP lawmakers express concern over Trump executive orders Beirut aftermath poses test for US aid to frustrating ally MORE has frequently expressed reluctance to wear a mask or call for a nationwide mandate, Democratic and Republican figures have called on Americans to wear face coverings whenever possible, including House Republican Conference Chairwoman Liz CheneyElizabeth (Liz) Lynn CheneyRepublicans fear disaster in November Gaetz set to endorse primary opponent of fellow Florida GOP lawmaker House GOP pushes back at Trump on changing election date MORE (R-Wyo.) and Senate Health Committee Chairman Lamar AlexanderAndrew (Lamar) Lamar AlexanderSeveral GOP lawmakers express concern over Trump executive orders The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by the Air Line Pilots Association - Negotiators 'far apart' as talks yield little ahead of deadline Trump-backed Hagerty wins Tennessee GOP Senate primary MORE (R-Tenn.).

“Unfortunately this simple lifesaving practice has become part of a political debate that says: If you're for Trump, you don't wear a mask. If you're against Trump, you do,” Alexander said at a Tuesday hearing.

“That is why I have suggested the president should occasionally wear a mask even though there are not many occasions when it is necessary for him to do so,” he added. “The president has millions of admirers. They would follow his lead. It would help end this political debate. The stakes are too high for it to continue.”