U.S. Federal Judge declares CDC's Mask Mandate for Planes and Trains "Unlawful"
Psaski says the ruling may be appealed by the Justice Department...
Just yesterday, a Florida Judge concluded that the CDC’s mask mandate for planes and trains was unlawful. Because of this decision, the TSA will no longer require masks in airports or on planes.
U.S. District Judge Kathryn Kimball Mizelle, appointed by former President Donald Trump, ruled that the CDC did not have the authority to impose such a mandate under the Public Health Services Act of 1944, and called the reasoning for the requirement “arbitrary and capricious.
Judge Mizelle claimed that the law only lets the CDC impose restrictions related to “inspection, fumigation, disinfection, sanitation, pest extermination [and] destruction” and the mask mandate does not fall under any of these pretexts.
This ruling comes just days after the Biden administration decided to extend the public transportation mask mandate for two weeks to monitor a rise in Covid-19 cases across the US.
Many companies including Uber, Amtrak, Southwest, United, Alaska, and Delta airlines have dismissed their mask mandates following the judge’s decision. Some places deemed “high risk” will still require face coverings, but this decision will do away with a majority of the mandate. Almost all states have done away with their state-wide mandates, so most places in the country will enforce or not enforce them at their own will.
The city of Philidelphia reinstated its mask mandate, starting April 18, after seeing a spike in Covid cases. The mandate does not come with a vaccine or testing requirement for restaurants but will require a face covering in most public places.
Many people are happy with the decision, as they have been calling for an end to the mandates since the beginning, while others see this as a threat to public safety and feel the mask mandate is necessary. For now, the mandate has been vacated and will be sent back to the CDC for further proceedings.