Federal Judge Issues Ruling On Federal Mask Mandate For Travelers

By Bill Galluccio

April 18, 2022

COVID-19 Cases Surge Across The U.S., Leading To New Preventative Measures
Photo: Getty Images

federal judge has struck down the mask mandate on public transportation. U.S. District Judge Kathryn Kimball Mizelle ruled that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention exceeded its statutory authority by requiring all passengers on buses, planes, and trains to wear a mask.

"The Mandate exceeded the CDC's statutory authority, improperly invoked the good cause exception to notice and comment rulemaking, and failed to adequately explain its decisions. Because 'our system does not permit agencies to act unlawfully even in pursuit of desirable ends,' id., the Court declares unlawful and vacates the Mask Mandate," Mizelle wrote.

The ruling comes after the CDC recently extended the federal mandate until May 3. It was previously set to expire on April 18.

White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki said that administration officials are reviewing the decision. Psaki urged travelers to wear a mask even though the mandate had been struck down.

"So, we would say to anyone sitting out there: we'd recommend you wear masks on the airplane. And then as soon as we can provide an update from here, hopefully soon," Psaki said.

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