The White House said the federal court ruling Monday to void the Biden administration’s mask mandate for travelers using public transportation such as trains and airplanes was “obviously a disappointing decision” in light of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommending its order for passengers to wear face coverings be extended.
A federal judge on Monday voided the Biden administration’s transportation mask mandate from the CDC, which applies to people as young as 2 years old, and had been set to expire a number of times. The order was recently extended to May 3 before Monday’s ruling.
“The CDC recommended continuing the order for additional time two weeks to be able to assess the latest science in keeping with its responsibility to protect the American people, so, this is obviously a disappointing decision,” White House press secretary Jen Psaki said Monday. “The CDC continues recommending wearing a mask in public transit.”
The ruling from U.S. District Court Judge Kathryn Kimball Mizelle came in a case brought in Florida federal court by Health Freedom Defense Fund, Inc. and frequent air travelers Ana Daza and Sarah Pope against the administration.
Judge Mizelle determined that the mandate violated the Administrative Procedure Act by being outside the scope of the CDC’s authority, was “arbitrary” and “capricious” and not going through the required notice and comment period for federal rulemaking.
It remains to be seen whether the administration will appeal the decision.
Fox News’ Peter Doocy pressed Psaki during the press briefing Monday asking, “Why is it that we can sit here in the White House briefing room with no masks, but people can’t sit in an airplane cabin with no masks?”
Psaki responded by citing the CDC’s green, yellow and red mask guidance to determine precautions to take based on specific COVID-19 community levels. She explained that Washington, D.C., is a “green zone,” so the CDC is not recommending that masks be worn.
This is an excerpt from Fox News.
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