April 20, 2022

Judge Voids Biden Mask Mandate for Travel

  • Executive, Flyover Country

By: Konrad Holden

In Brief: 
On Monday, a federal judge put a stop to Biden’s mask mandate for travel. The judge’s decision revolved around a 1944 public health services act that allows the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) to impose certain rules to stop the spread of diseases. The judge repeatedly said that the administration’s reasoning for imposing the rule while breaking protocol is not valid. The administration is expected to appeal the decision.

The Background: 
U.S. District Court Judge Kathryn Kimball Mizelle has stood up to the Biden administration with her ruling against the CDC rule requiring masks on all transportation. 

Biden’s rule was recently extended through May 3rd.

The rule was challenged by the Health Freedom Defense Fund, Inc. and two individuals in a Florida federal court. Judge Mizelle called the mask mandate "arbitrary" and "capricious" and said the CDC did not follow normal procedure requiring public notice of the rule change and a comment period for citizens to weigh in on the decision.

"The context of [the statute] indicates that ‘sanitation’ and ‘other measures’ refer to measures that clean something, not ones that keep something clean. Wearing a mask cleans nothing,” Judge Mizelle said.

Mizelle went even further and blasted the CDC’s reasoning, saying, “The CDC's failure to explain its reasoning is particularly problematic here. At the time when the CDC issued the Mandate, the COVID-19 pandemic had been ongoing for almost a year and COVID-19 case numbers were decreasing. This timing undercuts the CDC's suggestion that its action was so urgent that a thirty-day comment period was contrary to the public interest."

Travelers will no longer be required to mask until the judge’s ruling is lifted.

Notable Quotes: 

"Therefore, TSA will not enforce its Security Directives and Emergency Amendment requiring mask use on public transportation and transportation hubs at this time. CDC recommends that people continue to wear masks in indoor public transportation settings." - Biden administration official
 

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