United States President Donald Trump joins West Point cadets during the Army Navy soccer game at Michie Stadium on December 12, 2020 in West Point, New York.
Brendan Smialowski | AFP | Getty Images
President Donald Trump did not wear a mask for some time as he stood near West Point cadets and midshipmen of the Naval Academy who all wore masks during the Army-Navy soccer game on Saturday.
Trump, who was hospitalized in early October after contracting the coronavirus, also did not wear a mask when he directed the coin toss before the game at the U.S. Military Academy in West Point, New York.
Nor did the umpire of the game during the coin toss, which Navy won by properly calling the tails.
The 121st meeting of the two service academies on the soccer grate came after coronavirus deaths hit a daily record of 3,309 Americans, bringing the US death toll this year to over 297,000 from the pandemic. As of Saturday, the number of coronavirus cases in the US hit 16 million so far this year.
After the coin toss, Trump entered the stands on the Army side of Michie Stadium, where he was surrounded by cadets wearing masks.
The Lame Duck President put on a mask in the stands at some point in the first quarter of the game, where he was standing not far from a cadet in an army mascot outfit.
But the president, who announced emergency approval for a coronavirus vaccine on Friday night, had his mask off when he left the stands.
And he wasn’t wearing a mask when he went out into the stands and stood with the Navy Midshipmen. With Trump in the stands was Mark Meadows, Chief of Staff of the White House, who was also not wearing a mask. Coronavirus was diagnosed at Meadows in early November.
U.S. President Trump stands among U.S. Army cadets as he participates in the Army-Navy annual college football game at Michie Stadium in West Point, New York, United States on December 12, 2020.
Tom Brenner | Reuters
Twitter users condemned the commander in chief for failing to set a good example to the cadets and midshipmen at the game, the 121st soccer meeting between the two service academies.
“Trump was the only person in the Army Navy game who wasn’t wearing a mask! Protect our troops, damn it!” Tweeted one person.
Another wrote: “He only cares about himself.”
Trump’s failure to wear a mask, even when federal health officials have urged all Americans to do so, is consistent with his near-constant refusal to wear face-covering during the Covid-19 pandemic, even when dozens of people in his orbit are positive for coronavirus have been tested.
In addition to Meadows, Trump’s wife, sons Barron and Donald Trump Jr., campaign managers, the White House press secretary, the Secretary for Housing and Urban Development, and the chair of the Republican National Committee are among those who have had Covid in the past few months.
Trump’s personal attorney Rudy Giuliani, who oversees botched legal efforts of his campaign to undo Joe Biden’s presidential election victory, was discharged from a Washington, DC hospital a few days ago after testing positive for the coronavirus. Previously, Giuliani’s son Andrew, a special assistant to Trump in the White House, had a coronavirus.
Trump left the game early before the second quarter ended.
He is expected to leave the White House on January 20, despite his desperate legal and rhetorical efforts to deny a Biden victory on Monday in the electoral college.
Biden is expected to win 306 votes, 36 more than needed to win the presidential race.
When Trump was on his way to West Point on Saturday, a federal judge threw back his lawsuit to invalidate Biden’s victory in the Wisconsin popular election.
On Friday, the US Supreme Court refused to allow the Texas Attorney General to file a lawsuit directly with that court to reverse election results that show victories for Biden in Georgia, Michigan, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin.