Reuters reporter Jeff Mason asks the President a question during Monday’s news conference. Sarah Silbiger/Reuters

In his Monday afternoon news conference, President Trump got into an exchange with Reuters correspondent Jeff Mason after Mason would not remove his face mask at the request of the President.

The President stopped Mason as he began to ask the first question, saying “you’re going to have to take that off, please.” He gestured to the space between the reporter and the podium, inquiring, “you’re…how many feet are you away?”

Mason replied that he would just speak louder to counter the effects of the mask. 

Trump was not satisfied with this response, telling the reporter his voice was “very muffled” with the face covering, “so if you would take it off, it would be a lot easier.”

Mason raised his voice and repeated his offer to speak louder, asking “is that better?”

The President sighed saying, “it’s better. Yeah, it’s better.”

Later in the news conference, Trump remarked that one reporter who did remove his mask sounded “so clear. As opposed to everybody else, where they refuse.”

This is not the first time that the President has requested a reporter take off his or her mask so that he could hear a question more clearly, but his disappointment with Mason’s response was notable.



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