As The Washington Post reports, the eight Republicans dispatched a letter to Attorney General Merrick Garland. In that letter, Republicans claim they “strongly condemn” violence toward airline workers, but they don’t want the good names of people who are biting, punching, and peeing their way through American skies to be damaged. Or their ability to do it again to be threatened.
Cruz & Co. argue that the Department of Justice can’t use the Transportation Security Administration to block those who have brought an unprecedented rate of violence and disruption to the air because the agency is intended to guard against “future horrific attacks, not to regulate human behavior onboard flights.”
In other words, because one guy—in England, in 2001—put a small amount of explosives in his shoes, we can still be told to remove our shoes before boarding flights an ocean and 20 years away. But 5,000 people beating up airline attendants, biting other passengers, and causing flight delays and diversions isn’t even worth keeping those same people off the next available flight.
Of course, it shouldn’t be too surprising that Cancun Cruz would be a big defender of passengers behaving badly:
Among the others, Sen. Mike Lee was out there trying to lift the mask requirement from all public transportation in June 2021 at a point when vaccines had barely become available to most Americans and both delta and omicron were still just symbols on fraternity walls.
Sen. James Lankford went from urging Republicans to wear masks, even at a Trump rally, to spreading conspiracy theories about how the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) developed mask guidelines.
And then there’s Sen. Marco Rubio, who made “protecting children from masks” a part of his campaign theme, has repeatedly insisted that masks are only for those who are “no mood to get even a little sick,” and both attacked Dr. Anthony Fauci for not insisting on masks more forcefully and declared that wearing a mask is a “fetish.”
Unsurprisingly, the set of eight Republicans who signed onto this letter to Garland is a pretty good match to those who have also signed onto going-nowhere legislation that would have both condemned mask mandates and criticized the CDC for not being more effective on getting more masks. Presumably for fetishists.
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