Speed Reads

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The House reinstated its mask mandate, and lawmakers are already fighting

The House just reinstated its mask mandate, per updated Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidelines, and already, things are not going according to plan.

On Wednesday, it was reported that Rep. Lauren Boebert (R-Colo.) threw a mask back in the face of a staffer, after Boebert tried to walk onto the floor without one. The latest mandate requires representatives and their staff to wear face coverings while in the House chamber, except when being recognized or speaking on the floor, per CNN. Those who violate the guidelines will be subject to fines. 

Boebert's office denied the characterization, and claims she returned the mask "with a quick slide across the table." Still, as Forbes' Andrew Solender reports, she is only one of quite a few lawmakers who could face punishment. 

Separately, Reps. Jared Huffman (D-Calif.) and Byron Donalds (R-Fla.) got into it after Huffman called Donalds "selfish" for not wearing a mask.

And Rep. Chip Roy (R-Texas), who reportedly remained maskless, made an impassioned call to adjourn out of protest, but not before accusing the House of "playing footsie with mask mandates." All but seven Republicans reportedly voted alongside him. 

But wait, there's more — even House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) and House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) were roped into the fun. On Tuesday, McCarthy condemned the decision to bring back masks as one not rooted in science, to which Pelosi reportedly replied, "He's such a moron."

She later clarified: "To say that wearing a mask is not based on science, I think, is not wise, and that was my comment. And that's all I'm going to say about that."