PRESIDENT Joe Biden got heat for removing his mask at the Lincoln Memorial - hours after signing an executive order mandating masks on federal property.
Biden took his mask off on Wednesday night for a televised address at the memorial and while he stood observing it, but wore it immediately before and after the TV hit.
In a video clip of Biden standing at the foot of the memorial for ex-President Abraham Lincoln, another person stood near him as music played.
The new president’s conservative critics quickly slammed him for apparently being a hypocrite.
"Does Joe Biden's new executive order mandating masks on federal property not apply to Joe Biden while he's on federal property?” tweeted Charlie Kirk, founder of the right-wing organization Turning Point USA.
“Because here he is at the Lincoln Memorial with no mask just hours after signing it.”
Reporter Ryan Saavedra of the conservative news site The Daily Wire also shared a video of bare-faced Biden.
“Here is Biden tonight at the Lincoln Memorial, which is on federal land, not wearing a mask,” Saavedra wrote.
Earlier on Inauguration Day, Biden signed the "100-day masking challenge," requiring masks and social distancing at all federal buildings and land by federal employees as well as contractors.
The order also applies to travel on airplanes, trains and transit systems between states.
"Wearing masks isn't a partisan issue—it’s a patriotic act that can save countless lives,” Biden tweeted on Wednesday night.
“That’s why I signed an executive order today issuing a mask mandate on federal property. It's time to mask up, America.”
The Sun reached out to the White House for comment.
During a news briefing on Thursday, a Fox News reporter asked White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki why Biden and his family members were not masked at all times at the memorial.
“At the inaugural address?” she responded.
“He was celebrating an evening of a historic day in our country and certainly he signed the mask mandate because it’s a way to send a message to the American public of the importance of wearing masks, saving tens of thousands of lives.”
Psaki added that White House staff take numerous precautions daily, including Covid-19 testing and mask wearing.
The Fox News reporter then asked if Biden was setting a good example for Americans who watched him on federal land.
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"I think the power of his example is also the message he sends by signing 25 executive orders, including almost half of them related to Covid,” Psaki said, adding that Wednesday was an “extraordinary moment” when he was inaugurated as president.
“We take a number of precautions," she concluded.
"But I think we have bigger issues to worry about at this moment in time.”