Pelosi: Nationwide mask mandate 'definitely long overdue'

Pelosi: Nationwide mask mandate 'definitely long overdue'
© Greg Nash

Speaker Nancy PelosiNancy PelosiSusan Collins asks postmaster general to address delays of 'critically needed mail' Trump says he'd sign bill funding USPS but won't seek changes to help mail voting On The Money: Senate leaves until September without coronavirus relief agreement | Weekly jobless claims fall below 1 million for first time since March | Trump says no Post Office funding means Democrats 'can't have universal mail-in voting' MORE (D-Calif.) said Sunday a nationwide mandate to wear face coverings to prevent the spread of coronavirus is “definitely long overdue.” 

“Definitely long overdue for that,” Pelosi told George StephanopoulosGeorge Robert StephanopoulosSchumer declines to say whether Trump executive orders are legal: They don't 'do the job' Meadows defends US COVID-19 testing amid criticism Meadows says White House is 'hopeful' it can announce new coronavirus therapies 'in the coming days' MORE on ABC's “This Week.” “And my understanding that the Centers for Disease Control [and Prevention] has recommended the use of masks but not required it because they don’t want to offend the president.”

The speaker called on President TrumpDonald John TrumpUSPS warns Pennsylvania mail-in ballots may not be delivered in time to be counted Michael Cohen book accuses Trump of corruption, fraud Trump requests mail-in ballot for Florida congressional primary MORE to “be an example” to the U.S. and wear a face covering, saying “real men wear masks.”

Pelosi also demanded the Senate and White House act to pass the $3 trillion coronavirus relief package approved by the House last month. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellOn The Money: Senate leaves until September without coronavirus relief agreement | Weekly jobless claims fall below 1 million for first time since March | Trump says no Post Office funding means Democrats 'can't have universal mail-in voting' Overnight Health Care: Senate leaves until September without coronavirus relief deal | US records deadliest day of summer | Georgia governor drops lawsuit over Atlanta's mask mandate Senate leaves until September without coronavirus relief deal MORE (R-Ky.) has not brought it to the floor for a vote. 

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“It’s time for this administration to take this seriously,” she said. “As Dr. [Anthony] Fauci said, we have a serious problem ahead.”

“This is life and death, and we do have a plan to again reverse this trend, as well as to kill off this virus,” she added. “We don’t have a vaccine, and we don’t have a cure. God willing and science enabling, we will sometime soon, but until we do, we have the tools to halt the growth of this.”

The U.S. reached 2.5 million coronavirus cases on Saturday and has recorded at least 125,539 deaths, according to data from Johns Hopkins University

The Trump administration has begun turning its attention to the campaign trail in the past week, holding indoor events in Arizona and Oklahoma, two states with rising cases, against the advice of public health officials. 

The president has praised the amount of testing conducted in the country but said at his Tulsa, Okla., rally that he wished fewer tests were conducted, so the number of confirmed cases would be lower. Trump and other officials later said his comments were made in jest.