President Trump changed his rhetoric on wearing masks in a press conference Tuesday, saying that "they have an impact." Mr. Trump's comments came as dozens of states and the District of Columbia experience a rise in coronavirus infections.
Mr. Trump spoke about the worsening crisis in a briefing that came the day after the president announced he would revive White House coronavirus task force briefings, which were a near-daily staple throughout much of March and into April before tapering off in favor of White House events focused on resurrecting the ailing economy.
Mr. Trump urged Americans to wear a mask in the briefing. He largely resisted wearing a mask in public for months and downplayed their importance but tweeted a picture of himself wearing one on Monday.
"Whether you like the mask or not, they have an impact," Mr. Trump said on Tuesday. He later added that he "will use it gladly, no problem with it." He also commented on the development of vaccines, saying that "the vaccines are coming and they're coming a lot sooner than anyone thought possible." However, the president warned that there could be a surge in cases in the near future.
"Some areas of country doing very well, others doing less well. It will probably unfortunately get worse before it gets better. I don't like saying that, but that's the way it is," Mr. Trump said.
In his first coronavirus briefing in months, Trump said the pandemic will probably get worse before it gets better.