Ron DeSantis Announces Lawsuit Against Federal Mask Mandate: Not ‘Grounded in Any Science’

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (R) and Florida Attorney General Ashley Moody (R) announced on Tuesday a lawsuit over the Biden administration’s extended mask mandate on planes and transportation hubs, noting that the rule is not grounded in science.

“The state of Florida joined by 20 other states has filed an action against the Biden administration and multiple parties within to challenge the mandatory mask mandate within transportation hubs and on airplanes,” Moody announced alongside the governor.

“This rule, this order is completely outside the bounds of the scope of federal power as we have argued successfully in numerous other cases, the CDC and the federal government and the Biden administration never had the power to issue this order originally,” she continued, noting that many do not realize that this “unlawful order” carries “not just civil penalties, but criminal penalties” as well.

“This must be lifted,” she said, adding, “We have a lot of faith in the court that they will agree with our legal analysis.”

“I think the governor would agree that we would hope and still demand that this administration take their huff on travel stands to the border,” Moody added.

In this June 8, 2020, file photo, Florida Attorney General Ashley Moody speaks during a roundtable discussion at the White House in Washington. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky, File)

DeSantis noted that Americans are still seeing “lingering elements of COVID theater” by way of this federal mask mandate, which officials continue to extend:

It’s not something that’s grounded in any science because if you have somebody sitting in the window seat and they’re nibbling on peanuts for two and a half hours, they can have their mask down. You have the person in the middle seat that is not eating, if they just wanted to read a magazine without the mask, somehow that would be a big problem

DeSantis also noted that Florida has won battles against the CDC over cruise ship guidance, as well as the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) vaccine mandate.

Other states joining the lawsuit include Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, Georgia, Idaho, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Utah, Virginia, and West Virginia.

CDC Director Rochelle Walensky, CDC Chief of Staff Sherri Berger, Health and Human Services Secretary Xavier Becerra, Transportation Security Administration (TSA) Administrator David Pekoske, and Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas are all listed as plaintiffs in the case.

This month, the TSA extended the mask mandate, which was supposed to expire March 18 to April 18.

The case is Florida v. Walensky, No. 8:22-cv-00718 in the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Florida.

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