The White House tried to downplay photos of President Joe Biden and first lady Jill Biden maskless in an upscale Washington, D.C., restaurant, contravening the capital's indoor mandate.
The Bidens had their masks in hand as they left Italian seafood restaurant Fiola Mare last Saturday, according to Jen Psaki.
"There are moments when we all don't put masks back on as quickly as we should," she told reporters Monday. "But I don't think we should lose the forest through the trees here."
Psaki stressed Biden's efforts to boost COVID-19 vaccination levels, touting private business and school requirements, as opposed to "moments in time that don't reflect overarching policy."
The first couple was photographed without masks indoors and outdoors as they left the restaurant, which boasts a $40 tortelloni bolognese dish on the menu.
The D.C. mask mandate requires indoor face coverings in public spaces unless "actively eating or drinking," regardless of vaccination status.
The Bidens have been caught flouting the administration's own mask guidance before. The president's older granddaughters took off their face coverings briefly for photos at the Lincoln Memorial on inauguration night.
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Original Author: Naomi Lim
Original Location: White House defends Bidens' maskless date night