Trump called for a reporter to take his mask off during his press conference on Monday
08 September 2020

Trump gets tetchy with reporter who refuses to take off his facemask while asking the President a question

Donald Trump told a reporter to take his facemask off to ask a question during his press conference at the White House on Monday.

The President asked Reuters journalist Jeff Mason to remove his face covering so he could hear him better, but Mason refused and instead opted to speak louder.

When Mason began to speak, Trump interrupted him by saying: "You’re going to have to take that off, please. You can take it off. How many feet are you away?"

Mason then offered instead to simply speak louder, to which the President responded: "Well, if you don’t take it off, you’re very muffled, so if you would take it off, it would be a lot easier."

Mason ignored the request, simply raising his voice and asking ‘Is that better?’, to which Trump reluctantly agreed.

Later on in the press conference when a reporter without a mask asked the President a question, Trump replied: "You sound so clear, as opposed to everybody else where they refuse."

The US leader has been widely criticised for his handling of the coronavirus pandemic which has seen nearly 6.5 million Americans tests positive for the virus and more than 190,000 deaths.

Trump is entering the final two months of his presidential election campaign as he bids to claw back the advantage his Democratic rival Joe Biden currently has in the polls.

Earlier this week the 74-year-old threatened to defund schools if they adopt The 1619 Project which aims to set the beginning of US history to 1619 when slaves first arrived in Virginia rather than in 1776 when the country gained independence from Great Britain.

It is a move Trump vehemently disagrees with and one he warned against directly over Twitter.

He said: "Department of Education is looking at this. If so, they will not be funded!"

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