WASHINGTON, D.C. – Several Republican members of Congress recently staged a protest over rules requiring the wearing of masks on the House floor – with violators facing stiff fines – during a voting session on Tuesday; the group would later go on to take a photo on the steps of the Capitol building that made the rounds on social media, reports say.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) has imposed a mandatory mask-wearing rule on the House floor, with a first-time offense netting the violator a $500 fine and a second offense jumping to $2,500.
Reps. Brian Mast (R-FL), Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA), Chip Roy (R-TX), Lauren Boebert (R-CO), Thomas Massie of (R-KY), Madison Cawthorn (R-NC), Beth Van Duyne (R-TX), Louie Gohmert (R-TX), Ralph Norman (R-SC) and Mary Miller (R-IL) all flouted Pelosi’s mask rule on Tuesday, with Mast quoted as saying “Best $500 I ever spent” as he exited the House chamber.
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Massie, according to reports, is the individual that organized the protest, and explained his reasoning via a Twitter post on Tuesday.
“We’ve had enough. We are refusing to wear our masks on the floor during this vote in spite of Pelosi’s threat to take $500 from each of us,” he said. “Her rule is not based on science. All you need to know is the mask rule has only ever applied to members when they can be seen on TV!”
A Capitol official confirmed that Boebert, Massie, Green, Roy, Good, Gohmert and Mary Miller were issued warnings for violating mask rules; Mast, Van Duyne and Marianette Miller-Meeks (R-IA) were fined $500 each.
Pelosi has stated that only 1 in 4 House members have received the COVID-19 vaccine – despite it being readily available since December – leading to her issuing the mask-wearing mandate that members of Congress are expected to follow when in the House chamber.
Currently, which members of Congress have been vaccinated or not is not part of the public record.