Cruz Spox Denies He Flouted Mask Rules On Flight

The Dallas Morning News reports:

U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz is facing backlash over a photo on social media of the Texas Republican aboard an American Airlines flight without a required face mask.

But the senator’s office said Cruz wasn’t flouting airline mandates and public health safeguards by taking off a mask, but “he temporarily removes the mask while eating or drinking,” according to a spokesman for his office.

“To help promote safety, Senator Cruz wears a mask when traveling, and practices social distancing where possible,” said a statement from spokeswoman Lauren Aronson. “Yesterday, during his flight, he removed his mask to drink and put it back on afterward. We should all practice common-sense measures to slow the spread of the virus.”

The New York Daily News reports:

American Airlines said Cruz was flying one of its regional “partner airlines” and that officials are looking into whether he violated the airline’s rules requiring face coverings on flights. “We are committed to protecting the health and safety of all those who fly with us,” American said in a statement.

Earlier in the day, the right-wing lawmaker held a political rally with a conservative Texas legislative candidate that was attended by an estimated 200 people, few if any of whom wore masks or took any steps to observe social distancing.

Right wingers are pointing to a photo of Cruz wearing a mask in the same outfit, but as you can see by the armrests and windows, he’s on a different plane.