Trump Appointed Judge Blocks Mask Mandates On Planes

( A Florida federal judge appointed by former President Donald Trump has struck down the federal mask mandates that were still in place for trains, airplanes buses and all other modes of public transportation.
That ruling was handed down by Judge Kathryn Kimball Mizelle on Monday, less than one week after the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention had extended the mask mandate through May 3.
In striking down the mask mandate, Mizelle put the decision up to individual local transit agencies and airlines to decide how to approach mask mandates.
Later that day following the ruling, several of the largest airlines in the country already dropped their requirements for passengers to wear masks on domestic flights. Passengers and employees for Amtrak also are no longer required to wear masks onboard.
The mask mandates that were overturned also applied to transportation hubs such as train stations and airports.
Following the ruling on Monday, an official with the Biden administration said the mask mandate was no longer in effect due to the ruling. And, as such, the Transportation Security Administration wouldn’t enforce it anymore.
Just two days later, though, the Department of Justice formally appealed that ruling, after the CDC made the recommendation to do so.
In a statement, the CDC said:
“It is CDC’s continuing assessment that at this time an order requiring masking in the indoor transportation corridor remains necessary for the public health. CDC will continue to monitor public health conditions to determine whether such an order remains necessary. CDC believes this is a lawful order, well within CDC’s legal authority to protect public health.”
The filings put forth by the DOJ didn’t include an immediate request for a stay on the order. In most emergency situations, such a move is considered standard, as it seeks to place a hold on the court order, which would’ve reinstated the mask mandate.
The reason why this wasn’t included could be that the appeal is more about an attempt to preserve the authority of the CDC for the future, rather than out of concern for public health regarding COVID-19.
As Jen Psaki, the press secretary for the White House, told CNN+ on Wednesday night that it was essential that the White House fight to preserve the future public health authority for the CDC.
She said:
“That’s important for two reasons: One because we think it’s entirely reasonable, as does the Department of Justice, for the CDC, the health and data experts — health experts most importantly in our administration — to be able to have that time to evaluate. But also because they want to fight to ensure the CDC’s authority and ability to put mandates in the future remains intact.
“We know there’s going to be ups and downs in this pandemic. We’re all ready for it to be over, but we want to ensure that our public health experts are able to take steps, if needed, in the future.”