If you're seeing a lot of tweets or headlines about hand-washing, the explanation lies with Fox News host Pete Hegseth. He set off a social media flurry when he told his co-hosts, "My 2019 resolution is to say things on-air that I say off-air: I don't think I've washed my hands for 10 years." It came during a lighthearted exchange when co-host Jedediah Bila was giving him grief about eating leftover pizza, notes USA Today (watch the clip here). "I don't really wash my hands ever," Hegseth said, adding that "germs are not a real thing" because he can't see them. Hegseth began taking a lot of ridicule online from those who took his remarks at face value, with some recalling that he was once a contender to run the Veterans Affairs department.
Hegseth appeared to double down Sunday when he retweeted this with a #DontWash hashtag: "I'm with you on hand washing," wrote a supporter. "I'm almost 70 and haven't had a cold or flu in years. Our bodies need some germs to learn how to fight them. Too many germofobes out there." On Monday, however, after MSNBC's Chris Hayes tweeted that Hegseth was "pretty clearly joking?," Hegseth responded: "When even @chrislhayes can see the obvious...Twitter really has come full circle." He added: "P.S. I also support drinking from garden hoses & riding bikes w/o a helmet. Cue outrage..." (Read more germs stories.)