Tim Ryan slams McCarthy for mocking Capitol physician, mask mandate

Rep. Tim RyanTimothy (Tim) RyanHawley endorses Vance in Ohio Senate race Congress should know what federal agencies are wasting  Trump administration trade rep endorses JD Vance in Ohio Senate race MORE (D-Ohio.) criticized House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthyKevin McCarthyWhite House debates vaccines for air travel McCarthy on Dems' spending bill: 'The amount of money we spent to win World War II' Democrats lean into vaccine mandates ahead of midterms MORE (R-Calif.) for mocking the Capitol physician and mask mandate. 

During a House floor meeting on Wednesday, Ryan used his time to speak about his fellow GOP lawmakers criticizing Capitol physician Brian Monahan’s advice to return to having mask mandates, adding that some lawmakers may be traveling back and forth to Washington, D.C., from hot spots. 

“Look, the attending physician of the United States Capitol, the top doctor for Congress, asks us to put on masks when we come to a chamber with 435 people,” Ryan said. “I hate these things. Absolutely. It was terrible having to put this back on. And we do it because the top doctor for all of us asked us to.” 

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“I may not be from a hot spot,” he added. “Somebody in this chamber is coming from a hot spot.” 

Ryan also called out McCarthy, saying that his remarks were “immature” and “beneath” a leader of Congress, calling them “cheap political points" 

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McCarthy earlier in the day argued that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's (CDC) recommendation wouldn't apply to the House, as 85 percent of it members are vaccinated, and said that Monahan should've added the Senate to his new memo as well. 

The minority leader's comments came after House Speaker Nancy PelosiNancy PelosiBiden pushes back at Democrats on taxes Yarmuth and Clyburn suggest .5T package may be slimmed Of partisan fights and follies, or why Democrats should follow Manchin, not Sanders MORE (D-Calif.) called him a "moron" for opposing the mask mandate.

“I just find it absolutely immature and appalling to somehow diminish it, try to score cheap political points. And that’s exactly what we saw a few minutes ago,” Ryan added in his comments.

“That is beneath a minority leader of one of the major political parties in the United States of America, saying we should take no caution that someone from a hot spot is working in this chamber and could potentially get someone infected that could go home to a sick parent or immune-compromised kid. That is beneath us. That is beneath us.” 

This comes amid Monahan’s memo to lawmakers on the return of the mask mandate in the House following the CDC's recommendation for vaccinated Americans to wear masks in certain settings. 

The debate over new mask mandates comes as the country grapples with a surge in infections due to the delta variant of the COVID-19 virus.