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Biden Promises Face Covering Regulations on Flights

Biden Promises Face Covering Regulations on Flights
Joe Cortez

If elected, U.S. presidential candidate Joe Biden says his administration would make it mandatory for flyers to wear face masks aboard aircraft. The policy wouldn’t just target airplanes: Face coverings would be required for all interstate travel, including buses and trains.

Throughout the 2020 U.S. presidential campaign, the use of face coverings has been a contentious point between both candidates. With around one week to go before Election Day on Nov. 3, 2020, Democratic candidate Joe Biden says his administration would make a face covering mandate a federal rule for interstate travel. Reuters reports the former vice president made the comments during a speech in Delaware on Friday, Oct. 23, 2020.

“Wearing masks is not a political statement, it is a scientific imperative.”

Throughout both debates, Biden has expressed his belief that the widespread use of face coverings in public can help reduce the spread of COVID-19. During his speech, he turned face mask usage into a campaign promise, saying he would make it a formal rule for interstate travel or entering federal buildings.

“As president I will mandate mask wearing in all federal buildings and all interstate transportation because masks save lives – period,” said Biden, as quoted by Reuters. “Wearing masks is not a political statement, it is a scientific imperative.”

Biden’s response is the complete opposite from the current stance of the White House, the U.S. Department of Transportation and Federal Aviation Administration. Multiple times, the executive branch and agencies have refused to create a national face covering mandate.

During a hearing before the Senate Commerce committee, FAA administrator Stephen Dickson told the elected officials his group wouldn’t create regulatory mandates. Rather, they would create “very specific” guidelines, which the agency “expect for all air carriers and the public to follow.”

This neutral position was upheld by the U.S. Department of Transportation, after an AFL-CIO petition to create a face covering rule was shot down. In their response, the DOT said “there should be no more regulations than necessary,” saying that the airlines and other interstate operators’ policies were “adequate to address the concerns” of a face covering rule.

Airlines Still Want Federal Rules, as Evidence Mounts on Face Covering Effectiveness

Even though the current government has not made a move towards a formal face covering rule, it’s still a topic that airlines reportedly want federal officials to consider. A recent report suggests airline employees still want a rule to be made, as they feel like they have little authority to enforce the rules if a customer does not comply.

Each of the major U.S. airlines have adopted a “zero tolerance” approach to face mask non-compliance. In many cases, going so far to cancel the itineraries and temporarily ban any flyer who refuses to wear a covering while aboard an aircraft.

View Comments (11)

11 Comments

  1. tkelvin69

    October 26, 2020 at 6:54 pm

    Another good reason to vote for Joe.

  2. Hawkeyefan

    October 26, 2020 at 10:04 pm

    What a load. Total political piece. I’d venture scientific evidence is mounting that masks DONT work. Nearly all states have mandates already. Here in MN, mask usage is almost universal. Yet our cases are spiking. Explain that away.

  3. Aloha1

    October 27, 2020 at 8:50 am

    Another good reason NOT to vote for Joe and the Marxists.

  4. jjmoore

    October 27, 2020 at 9:59 am

    In order for a mandate to be a “scientific imperative”, isn’t there actual science needed? I haven’t seen a published research document yet that makes the correlation between mask wearing and the reduction of transmission of a virus. Those that like to name-toss Lancet, AMA, WHO, CDC … fantastic, but they haven’t produced a research document that shows a correlation in absence of significant uncontrolled variables.

    Just as a reference point, a N95 mask has pores on average 0.3 microns in diameter. Coronaviruses have average particle diameters of 0.1 micron. Assuming a gaussian distribution of particle size (SD of around 0.2 microns for both the pore size and the particle size), you can do some basic statistical analysis and realize that the mask only stops 10% at best, and that is IF the mask is perfectly sealed around the nose and mouth. We all know that this is never the case, meaning that even less of the virus is actually stopped. Virus incorporated with liquid aerosol will be blocked by the mask… only until the liquid dries, and then the virus can go right through.

    I’m sick and tired of posters here name calling and making false claims based on refutable and incomplete literature being taken for granted by the media. It’s pretty sick.

    Joe Biden couldn’t even spell “pandemic” until March… and I’m pretty sure he has to look up the definition daily, as he forgets it again and again. He can’t even remember what position he is running for most days or who he is running against (George Bush, as recently as yesterday).

    Liberals – the facts don’t care about your feelings. Joe Biden’s worst enemy is the facts.. likewise for most liberals.

  5. cmd320

    October 27, 2020 at 10:04 am

    And how would this differ from the policies in place at every US airline currently? All this will do is tie this up in beaurcratic red-tape and make it more difficult to repel when masks are no longer necessary.

  6. tkelvin69

    October 27, 2020 at 4:59 pm

    https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/hcp/respirator-use-faq.html#:~:text=N95%20respirators%20are%20tight%2D,breathing%20through%20a%20respirator.

    https://www.fda.gov/medical-devices/personal-protective-equipment-infection-control/n95-respirators-surgical-masks-and-face-masks

    https://jamanetwork.com/journals/jamainternalmedicine/fullarticle/2769441

    Terrible misinformation based upon trump “science”. Covid is spread by being contained within droplets and masks reduce the transmission. It’s not the size of the virus. It is primarily spread by large (>5-10 μm) respiratory droplets that can be expelled up to 6 feet horizontally and drop to the ground within seconds, against which surgical masks generally offer adequate protection.2,3

  7. amex007

    October 28, 2020 at 4:21 am

    Maybe look at how you can get the travel back in the air or on the ground. Masks will be pointless if airlines go belly up.

  8. BMGRAHAM

    October 28, 2020 at 4:52 am

    It’s stunning that this man thinks the general public wants regulation to make masks mandatory. The system works as it is now. The science and data prove it.

  9. PDog

    October 28, 2020 at 10:33 am

    Political grandstanding

  10. thebug622

    November 2, 2020 at 10:25 am

    Joe Im betting on you,however lets LOCK this country down for 28 Days and defeat this Virus,show us you have the leadership ability to get America to accept this sacrifice for the overall good or our country Bandaids do not work lets bite the bullett.Our faith is on you Mr President elect to get the ball moving.

  11. ByteCrawler

    November 12, 2020 at 7:43 am

    Why do we always look to the federal government to solve our problems? This is already being handled by the airlines (try to get on a plane without a face mask). The issue is that the airlines don’t like having responsibility and want someone else to be the “bad guys.” Just like with the limits on size and weight of carry-ons: “Don’t blame us, it’s ‘Federal regulations’…”

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