Lara A. Wessel

Document Type



Political ideology develops through the process of socialization. Political ideology influences public attitudes toward a variety of issues. A perplexing question relates to the development of the face mask as a divisive political symbol. The messaging of President Donald J. Trump is examined to analyze the potential influence of messaging on public use of face masks. Findings indicate mask usage among Americans in 2020 varied by party identification. Those who identified as Republican were less likely to wear a face mask than non-Republicans. The findings indicate political ideology should be considered when developing messaging about public health recommendations.