Florida judge voids US mask mandate for planes, other travel

PETERSBURG, Fla.– A federal judge in Florida has voided the national mask mandate covering planes and other public transportation as going beyond the authority of U.S. health authorities even in the coronavirus pandemic.The choice Monday by U.S. District Judge Kathryn Kimball Mizelle in Tampa, an appointee of former President Donald Trump, also stated the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention incorrectly failed to validate its decision and did not follow appropriate rulemaking.In her 59-page judgment, Mizelle said the only remedy was to vacate the guideline entirely because it would be difficult to end it for the minimal group of individuals who objected to it in the lawsuit.”Because our system does not allow agencies to act unlawfully even in pursuit of desirable ends, the court declares illegal and vacates the mask required,” she wrote.The CDC recently extended the mask required, which was set to end Monday, until May 3 to enable more time to study the BA.2 omicron subvariant of the coronavirus that is now responsible for the large bulk of cases in the U.S.The mask requirement for travelers was the target of months of lobbying from the airline companies, which looked for to kill it.

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