A top Republican official in Massachusetts is expressing remorse for not wearing a mask at a White House holiday party before being diagnosed with COVID-19.
Tom Mountain, vice chairman of the Massachusetts Republican Party, attended a Hanukkah celebration at the White House on Dec. 9. After returning home to the Bay State, he tested positive for coronavirus.
He told NBC affiliate WJAR that he and others were maskless during the party.
"People would just leisurely and gingerly take off their mask to mingle, to schmooze. I don't even think some people wore masks the entire time," he told WJAR. "And again, I was guilty as anyone else. I just wasn't wearing a mask."
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The Republican said he regrets his objection to face coverings.
"I was one of the naysayers," he told the TV station. "I am no longer a naysayer."
Mountain said family members tried to talk him out of going, but he didn't listen, citing a political and moral obligation.
According to the Boston Globe, Mountain's wife, son, daughter-in-law and mother-in-law have tested positive for COVID-19, as well.
"I have to admit I wasn't the most careful about wearing the face masks," Mountain told the Globe. "But now I'm zealous about it. I have no doubt about their necessity."