The federal judge is reducing the mask order on airplanes and public transportation

WASHINGTON – A federal judge in Florida on Monday ruled out the need for a federal mask on planes, trains, buses and other public transport within a week. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has extended it until May 3.

A 59 Page EndFormer President Donald J. Judge Katherine Kimball Michel, who was appointed by Trump, overturned the order – which also applies to airports, train stations and other transit hubs – for a number of reasons across the country, including ruling that the agency violated its legal authority. Public Health Services Act 1944.

The Judiciary has no immediate opinion on whether the Biden administration will appeal – if so, whether it will ask Judge Michelle or the Court of Appeal to keep its judgment pending any further cases so that the ruling can continue to be enforced. A CDC spokesman declined to comment.

It is unclear whether airlines will continue to require unregulated passengers to wear masks. But last month, executives of major airlines, including American Airlines, Delta Airlines and United Airlines, asked Biden management to allow the mask to be forced on planes and airports. Expires in a joint letter.

However, the ruling comes at a time when new corona virus cases are on the rise again. Last week, the CDC extended the mask rule until May 3, citing an option to assess the potential severity of the Omicron subtype. PA.2, It recently became the primary version of the New American lawsuit. On Monday, the city of Philadelphia was re-established The answer is a mask orderThe first major city to do so.

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On Monday afternoon, Sarah Nelson, president of the Flight Workers’ Union, a union representing about 50,000 workers at 20 airlines, said in a statement that she was waiting for “further legal analysis of what this means” and that it would be minimal. 24 to 48 hours to implement and communicate new procedures.

“We urge everyone to be patient, calm and follow the advice of team members,” he said. “Furthermore, we remind passengers that it is legally necessary to follow the instructions of team members, and disruptive behavior can have serious consequences, putting everyone at risk.”

Tim Minton, a spokesman for the Metropolitan Transportation Authority, which oversees New York City’s subways and some commuter trains entering the city, said Monday: “We will continue to follow CDC guidelines and review Florida court orders.”

Shortly after taking office, President Biden called on the CDC to issue a masking order to passengers, and the company did so on February 2, 2021. It extended that order several times, in July, to the Health Freedom Defense Fund, Wyoming – based advocacy group, The case continued Challenges its legitimacy.

Attempts to approach the committee to comment on Monday were not immediately successful. But Judge Michelle largely accepted its arguments, ruling that the agency violated congressional mandate to prescribe “sanitation” measures – only to clean up property – and not to take public health measures.

“If Congress had intended this definition, the power given to the CDC would have been breathtaking,” he wrote. “It’s definitely not limited to ‘health’ activities like masks.”

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If the government’s interpretation of the agency’s powers is accurate, CDC businesses may need to install air filtration systems, vaccinate people, or require “cough and daily multivitamins into the elbows.”

President Donald J. Following Trump’s re-election defeat, Judge Michelle was appointed to the bench in November 2021. He was a former clerk of Judge Clarence Thomas, who was 33 years old at the time Younger person Mr. for life as a judge. Trump was appointed; The American Bar Association announced her Not eligible due to lack of experienceBut she was confirmed that day A party queue vote.

Lawrence Costin, a professor of global health law at Georgetown University, said the Biden administration should appeal the decision if it wants to pursue the order. He also supported the agency’s authority to provide mask requirements.

“If the CDC had ever had the power to act, the classic case would have been to prevent the spread of dangerous epidemics between states,” he said.

Judge Michel, who issued the order under “emergency” procedures, did not delay public comment on the plan – dismissing the notion that there was no time for it because the epidemic had already been going on for a year.

“The CDC issued the decree in February 2021, almost two weeks after the call for a presidential decree, 11 months after President Kovit declared 19 a national emergency, and almost 13 months since the Secretary of Health and Human Services declared a state of emergency,” he said. . “This history tells us that the CDC itself was not particularly serious over time.”

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In emphasizing that 11 months have passed since the “president” declared a national emergency, Judge Michel did not mention the fact that another administration is now in office.

As of Sunday, there were an average of 37,000 new cases a day, up 39 percent from two weeks earlier. According to the New York Times database. Although this number is much lower than the peak of the winter upsurge driven by the Omigron variant, experts believe that new cases are increasingly being calculated. Home test increase.

On Sunday, the new White House Govt-19 Response Coordinator Dr. Ashish K. JA, CDC “has made it very clear that it takes 15 days to assess the impact of BA.2 on hospitalizations and deaths. There is a significant increase in acute illnesses.”

“My expectation is that we’ll be able to collect that data and in two weeks’ time we will make a more lasting decision,” he told ABC’s this week.

Judge Michelle had personal relationships with the Trump administration. She married Chad Michelle, who was a lawyer at the Trump White House. In 2019, the White House Cleaned up Most of them High leadership Department of Homeland Security. As part of that shake-up, Mr. Michelle was appointed, where she signed. A restrictive new Making it difficult for immigrants to get asylum.

Nova Wayland, Ana Lay And Adele Hassan Contributed report.

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