Three Republican members of the House lost their appeal over a $500 fine each was assessed for refusing to wear a mask on the floor of the chamber during session, the Associated Press reports.
Representatives Marjorie Taylor Greene (Q-Georgia), Thomas Massie (R-Kentucky) and Ralph Norman (R-South Carolina) must pay the fine for failing to adhere to House rules that were put in place in June 2020 to stop the spread of the coronavirus.
Greene claimed that the rule was “arbitrary and capricious, an abuse of discretion, and otherwise not consistent with law or with principles of fairness.” The rule applied to all House members and it was based on the recommendations of Dr. Brian Monahan, Congress’ attending physician.
Norman stated that he was following the guidance of the CDC after the CDC updated recommendations for fully vaccinated people in May. “I voted on the House floor without wearing my mask,” Norman wrote in a statement at the time. “I did so because I was following the direction of our nation’s top scientists that fully vaccinated individuals do not need to wear a mask.”
While the CDC loosened guidelines for fully vaccinated people in May and June, the House did not lift the mask rule for fully-vaccinated members and staff until June 11th, a week after the incident for which the trio was fined.