Biden Administration to Appeal This Mandate if CDC Gets on Board

President Joe Biden’s Administration said that it would appeal a judge ruling ending a mask mandate on airplanes and public transportation if the CDC deemed it necessary in order to prevent the spread of COVID-19. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said that they will continue to study whether or not the mandate was actually still needed. The mandate had applied to planes, trains, and other public transportation before the ruling on Monday. The mandate was expected to expire by May 3rd, 2022. The Justice Department said it would appeal the ruling on Monday by U.S. District Judge Kathryn Mizelle. She ruled that the 14-month-old directive was unlawful.

The Department of Justice disagreed with the ruling. Below is a statement made by the Department of Justice.

“The Department of Justice and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention disagree with the district court’s decision and will appeal, subject to CDC’s conclusion that the order remains necessary for public health,” spokesman Anthony Coley said in a statement. “The Department continues to believe that the order requiring masking in the transportation corridor is a valid exercise of the authority Congress has given CDC to protect the public health. That is an important authority the Department will continue to work to preserve,” Coley said.

An appeal could be risky. If the government loses this would limit the government’s ability to make similar mandates in the future. If the 11th Circuit Court upholds the ruling and strikes down the mandate, it would proceed all other federal courts in that circuit which covers the entire southeast of America. Whereas a Supreme Court ruling which upheld the decision to strike down the mandate would make the judge conclusion about the CDC’s limit to authority binding nationwide.

Early on in Tuesday president Joe Biden said that he wasn’t sure if they would appeal the decision. When he was in New Hampshire he was asked if he wanted to appeal the new mask ruling and he said he hadn’t conferred with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Whereas others in his administration spoke and said that an appeal was likely.

Health and Human Services Secretary Xavier Becerra had earlier suggested on Tuesday that such a move was likely. “We are right now in the process of deciding, and we likely will appeal that ruling. Stay tuned,” Becerra said at a news conference with Nevada Gov. Steve Sisolak.
Irrespective of the ruling on Tuesday, President Joe Biden went aboard Air Force One in New Hampshire wearing a black mask. Everyone aboard Air Force One was required to wear masks. Meanwhile commercial airline passengers across the United States were finally able to forgo wearing a mask.
It appears that administration officials were caught off guard by the judge’s decision to strike down the mask requirement which had already been in place for over 440 days. The decision about whether American travelers must wear masks, something this administration had been contemplating for a while, was now urgent and before a U.S. District judge. Administration lawyers had been weighing the options on how to respond to the decision. The administration’s lawyers were primarily concerned with the undermining of the CDC’s authority to enforce public health rules. At the same time other administration officials were concerned that a higher court would also rule against the mask mandate. This would make an appeal very risky. A Supreme Court ruling would set precedent undercutting the CDC’s authority nationwide.

This story syndicated with permission from For the Love of News

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