Politics

Justice Department appeals mask ruling after CDC says mandate still needed 

After a federal judge in Florida ruled in favor of repealing mask ruling on public transit, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention announced on Wednesday that the mandate of requiring masks on planes and in other public transportation settings is still needed.

That announcement put a Justice Department appeal of the federal court decision in motion.

“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,” the statement from the agency said. “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.”

After the CDC released the statement, the Justice Department immediately filed a notice of appeal.

“In light of today’s assessment by the CDC that an order requiring masking in the transportation corridor remains necessary to protect the public health, the Department has filed a notice of appeal,” the Justice Department said.

But announcing the move to appeal does not change the removal of the mask mandate that took place earlier this week. The Justice Department did not ask for a stay of the judge’s decision, which would have at least temporarily reinstated the masking requirements.

On Tuesday, the Justice Department announced ahead of time that it planned to appeal the ruling that was released by U.S. District Court Judge Kathryn Kimball Mizelle, who said that the CDC failed to adequately justify their order and did not follow rulemaking procedures.

After the ruling, every major U.S. airline along with many airports said they would not be enforcing face coverings on their aircrafts or in their transportation hubs. Uber, Lyft, Coach USA, Megabus, Greyhound, and Amtrak will no longer be requiring face masks either.

Despite the federal government saying earlier in the week that it would no longer be enforcing the mandate, the White House is still recommending that all passengers wear masks. 

ARTICLE: ELIZABETH HERTZBERG

MANAGING EDITOR: CARSON CHOATE

PHOTO CREDITS: DALLAS NEWS

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