Biden: Ending mask mandates 'Neanderthal thinking'

President Joe Biden called the decisions by the governors of Texas and Mississippi to end mask mandates “a big mistake" and slammed what he said was “Neanderthal thinking” at a time he says the nation needs to remain vigilant against COVID-19. (March 3)

Video Transcript

[INTERPOSING VOICES]

JOE BIDEN: Texas, I think it's a big mistake. Look--

- Thank you.

JOE BIDEN: --I hope everybody's realized by now these masks make a difference. We are on the cusp of being able to fundamentally change the nature of this disease because of the way in which we were able to get vaccines in people's arms. We've been able to move that all the way up to the end of May to have enough for every American-- to get every adult American to get a shot.

And the last thing-- the last thing we need is Neanderthal thinking that in the meantime everything's fine; take off your mask. Forget it. It still matters.

I carry a card with me. I don't have it. I put it on my desk. As of last-- as of yesterday, we had lost 511,874 Americans. We're going to lose thousands more.

This will not occur-- we will not have everybody vaccinated or sometime in the summer. We have the vaccine to do it-- getting a shot in someone's arm and getting the second shot. You're going to take time.

And it's critical, critical, critical, critical that they follow the science. Wash your hands-- hot water. Do it frequently. Wear a mask and stay socially distanced. And I know you all know that. I wish the heck some of our elected officials knew it. So thank you very much.

[INTERPOSING VOICES]