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Republicans push for end of New York’s mask mandate, call for alignment with CDC guidance

Republicans are calling for the state to end its mask-mandate and fall in line with Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommendations.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo said last week that New York would keep its mask mandate in place even as the CDC has called for the mandate to be relaxed for those who have been vaccinated. Local officials, members of the public, and health experts have all urged the governor to adopt the federal guidelines.

“As the nation continues to get back on its feet in the aftermath of the COVID pandemic, the CDC’s welcome, new guidance on mask-wearing represents another significant step toward normalcy and recovery. Unfortunately, Andrew Cuomo is standing in the way,” said Assembly Republican Leader Will Barclay (R,C,I-Pulaski). “The CDC has been studying this virus with the full measure of its substantial resources and expertise since Day One. The Legislature should take this step to align New York’s requirements with the federal government’s and put an end to Gov. Cuomo’s attempt to create unnecessary mask-confusion.”

“For over a year, we have been told to follow the science and encourage all New Yorkers to get vaccinated — which we have all supported. With more and more New Yorkers being vaccinated and the CDC now recommends that fully vaccinated individuals no longer need to wear a mask indoors or outdoors, we should follow the science and immediately repeal Governor Cuomo’s mask mandate,” said Assemblyman Michael Lawler (R,C,I,SAM-Pearl River). “The time has come for New Yorkers to get back to a sense of normalcy and resume their regular activities, and they can do so safely and in adherence to all CDC guidelines. Let’s unmask New York now!”

“This is just another example of the governor insisting he knows more than everyone else. As we continue to reopen our state, it is critical we do so using the best available scientific and data-driven guidance. With his recent decision to shirk the CDC, it is clear the governor is not interested in that,” added Barclay.