Delaware declares COVID-19 state of emergency as Biden spends time at home

Delaware to enter state of emergency due to COVID-19, president and first lady continue vacation

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Delaware will enter a state of emergency due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic as President Biden and first lady Jill Biden continue their time at home in the coastal state.

Delaware Gov. John Carney released a statement Thursday that Delaware would be entering a state of emergency effective Monday. The governor plans to activate resources from the National Guard for help covering staffing shortages at medical centers and "combat the winter surge of COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations."

"Members of our Guard and frontline health care workers continue to step up time and time again. We need all Delawareans and Delaware businesses to step up and help us get through this winter surge," wrote Carney. "At the State level, we are focused on reducing the strain on our hospitals this winter, and getting even more Delawareans vaccinated."

President Biden walks to speak with reporters on the South Lawn before departing from the White House on Marine One on Dec. 27, 2021 in Washington. (Photo by Anna Moneymaker/Getty Images)

President Biden walks to speak with reporters on the South Lawn before departing from the White House on Marine One on Dec. 27, 2021 in Washington. (Photo by Anna Moneymaker/Getty Images)

BIDEN SHAKES HANDS MASKLESS BUT DECIDES TO PUT MASK ON BEFORE PHOTO

The governor explained in the statement that his administration is working to "enable members of the Delaware National Guard to work as certified nursing assistants (CNAs) in skilled nursing facilities to care for patients currently in Delaware hospitals. Approximately 100 members of the Delaware National Guard are currently being trained to become CNAs."

DOVER, DE - JUNE 5:   Delaware Governor John Carney prepares to address the media before placing the first bet at Dover Downs Casino on June 5, 2018 in Dover, Delaware.  Delaware is the first state to launch legal sports betting since the Supreme Court decision. (Photo by Mark Makela/Getty Images)

DOVER, DE - JUNE 5:   Delaware Governor John Carney prepares to address the media before placing the first bet at Dover Downs Casino on June 5, 2018 in Dover, Delaware.  Delaware is the first state to launch legal sports betting since the Supreme Court decision. (Photo by Mark Makela/Getty Images)

Carney concluded with a thank you for those working in health care and a call for everyone in the state to get vaccinated and boosted.

"I especially want to thank all of Delaware’s health care workers who continue to work on the front lines of this crisis. The best thing we can do to support them is to remain vigilant – and do what works," Carney wrote. "After two years of this pandemic, we all know what to do. Mask up in public places to protect yourself and vulnerable family members. Get your vaccine. And get a booster if you’re eligible. That’s the best way to prevent serious illness and hospitalization."

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The Bidens are currently at home in Wilmington. 

Biden has been called out several times for sending mixed signals on wearing masks. Biden received criticism for shopping at Murray’s Toggery Shop on the island of Nantucket last month without a mask, despite a sign on the front door saying, "Required face covering." 

Biden received mockery online Tuesday evening into Wednesday morning after a clip posted on Twitter showed him wearing a mask while walking outside on a Delaware beach with his wife and their dog Commander.

Footage captured by C-SPAN shows Biden, who is fully vaccinated with a booster shot, wearing a mask outside during a stroll on Rehoboth Beach with few people around them. The first lady, who is also fully vaccinated, was not wearing a mask.