New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy (D-N.J) on NBC's Meet the Press Sunday called for a national face mask mandate to help prevent the spread of the coronavirus.

Why it matters: Guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends but does not require people to wear masks in public — despite recent spikes in new coronavirus cases around the United States.

  • Without a national mandate, many states, including New Jersey, have moved to require face masks in public.

Be smart: Scientific evidence shows that wearing face masks can help prevent the spread of the virus, but distrust in public health advice has forced a partisan dispute about face masks.

What he's saying: Murphy said the country needs a national strategy, and that "masking has got to be at the core of that."

MURPHY: "Listen, this thing is lethal. New Jersey's paid an enormous price. We've lost over 13,000 confirmed fatalities from COVID-19. We're starting to see a — small spikes in reinfection from folks coming back from places like Myrtle Beach and as well as in Florida, other hotspots. To me, it says we need a national strategy. We're only as strong as our weakest link right now. As you mentioned in the, in the outset of the program, I said, 'We went through hell. We cannot afford to go through hell again.' We need a national strategy. I think right now masking has got to be at the core of that."
ANDREA MITCHELL: "And do you think that there should be a national mask requirement?"
MURPHY: "I do. I do, Andrea. It's become almost not even debatable. Certainly when you're going out and absolutely indoors. As I’ve mentioned, this virus is a lot more lethal inside than outside, but if you're leaving your house, put on a mask. I think it ought to be a national requirement."

Go deeper

GOP Rep. Rodney Davis tests positive for coronavirus

Rep. Rodney Davis. Photo: Alex Wong/Getty Images

Rep. Rodney Davis (R-Ill.) announced on Wednesday that he has tested positive for the coronavirus.

Why it matters: Davis, the top Republican on the House Administration Committee, said he has taken precautions against the virus, such as twice-daily temperature checks. He spoke to Republicans about staying safe after Rep. Louie Gohmert (R-Tex.) recently tested positive for the virus and spoke out against wearing face masks, Politico notes.

Updated 9 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 7:30 p.m. ET: 18,982,658 — Total deaths: 712,266— Total recoveries — 11,477,642Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 7:30 p.m. ET: 4,873,747 — Total deaths: 159,931 — Total recoveries: 1,598,624 — Total tests: 59,652,675Map.
  3. Politics: Pelosi rips GOP over stimulus negotiations: "Perhaps you mistook them for somebody who gives a damn" — Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine tests positive.
  4. Public health: Majority of Americans say states reopened too quicklyFauci says task force will examine aerosolized spread.
  5. Business: The health care sector imploded in Q2More farmers are declaring bankruptcyJuly's jobs report could be an inflection point for the recovery.
  6. Sports: Where college football's biggest conferences stand on playing.
Updated Aug 5, 2020 - Health

N.Y., N.J. and Conn. to require travelers from 35 states to quarantine

Photo: Spencer Platt/Getty Images

Travelers from 35 states are now required to quarantine for 14 days when traveling to New York, New Jersey and Connecticut, per New York state's health department.

What's new: New York City will set up bridge and tunnel checkpoints to enforce the quarantine order, Mayor Bill de Blasio said Wednesday, per the Wall Street Journal.