Rep. Louie Gohmert said he “can’t help but wonder” if wearing a face mask was what led to him becoming infected with the coronavirus.
The Texas Republican, who tested positive for COVID-19 on Wednesday and has been chided in the past for refusing to wear a face covering, said he finally started wearing a mask in recent days — and that it likely got him infected, he told local news station KETK-TV.
“There are an awful lot of people that think it’s a great thing to do all the time,” Gohmert said. “But I can’t help but think that if I hadn’t been wearing a mask so much in the last 10 days or so, I really wonder if I would’ve gotten it.”
“You know, moving the mask around, getting it just right, I’m bound to have put some virus on the mask,” he said. “That’s most likely what happened.”
Gohmert, 66, had been spotted around the Capitol without a mask and told reporters it wasn’t necessary because he is frequently tested.
The congressman tested positive as he prepared to join President Trump on a campaign swing through the Lone Star state.
He said this week that his treatment will include the antimalarial drug hydroxychloroquine — a treatment repeatedly hawked by Trump as a cure for COVID-19, despite scientific data that has shown it is ineffective to treat the virus.
As for masks, Gohmert said he will now be donning one since his diagnosis — making the distinction that it’s best to do so once you have contracted the coronavirus.
“I will be religiously wearing a mask as I leave the building,” he told the station. “I will not be around anybody for the next 10 days without making sure that I have a mask.”
“Because that’s the real danger, once you have it, giving it to somebody else,” he said. “And that’s when a mask is most important.”