News and Commentary

Brit Hume Hits Biden For ‘Virtue-Signaling’ Mask Photo In Viral Tweet; Trump Retweets
Democratic presidential candidate and former US Vice President Joe Biden (R) walks with his wife Jill at the Delaware Memorial Bridge Veteran's Memorial Park in New Castle, Delaware, May 25, 2020.

On Monday, presumptive Democratic nominee Joe Biden made his first in-person public appearance in over two months. The former VP, wearing a black mask to cover his mouth and nose, appeared alongside his wife, Jill Biden, near their Delaware home to lay a Memorial Day wreath at a veterans park.

The mask gained the attention of politicos online, some praising the former VP for setting an “example,” and others suggesting the face mask was bad optics for a potential leader of the free world and essentially useless in outdoor settings where social distancing is possible.

Fox News commentator Brit Hume did the latter, captioning a photo of a masked Biden via Twitter: “This might help explain why Trump doesn’t like to wear a mask in public. Biden today.”

The tweet quickly went viral, gaining over 60,000 likes, 50,000 comments, and a retweet from President Donald Trump.

Swamped with criticism (as well as praise), Hume defended his post about Biden, hitting the Democrat for nothing more than engaging in “virtue signaling.”

“Uh, he was around a lot of people. Guess you don’t know how events involving a presidential candidate work, do you, Karen?” Bruce Rheins said to Hume.

“Uh, he was visiting a cemetery and had been in quarantine for weeks,” Hume pointed out. “The video showed no one within six feet of him beside his wife. So what was the mask for, other than to virtue signal?”

“A President takes measures to protect others. That’s what a mask does,” argued Ronald Klain. “That’s what a competent President would have done, months ago: on testing, on PPE (personal protective equipment), on social distancing. And many fewer Americans would be grieving today.”

Hume answered, “Biden was visiting a cemetery with his wife. Both have been quarantined for weeks. So what others was [he] protecting, pray tell?”

Many defended Hume’s take, as well.

Daily Wire podcast host Micheal Knowles, for example, emphasized the optics of the photo, in agreement with the journalist.

“[Brit Hume] gets it,” he wrote. “The people criticizing him for this tweet don’t.”

Earlier in the day, Trump hit Biden over his reaction to the president’s now-widely praised move to cut off travel from China in January to help slow the spread of the novel coronavirus.

“Sleepy Joe Biden (mostly his reps.) went crazy when I banned, in late January, people coming in from China,” Trump wrote. “He called me ‘xenophobic’ & then went equally ‘nuts’ when we let in 44,000 people – until he was told they were American citizens coming home. He later apologized!”

“Nobody in 50 years has been WEAKER on China than Sleepy Joe Biden,” he added. “He was asleep at the wheel. He gave them EVERYTHING they wanted, including rip-off Trade Deals. I am getting it all back!”

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