Senator who chairs transport committee ripped for going maskless on flight


Mississippi Sen. Roger Wicker, who chairs a committee that oversees airlines and transportation policy, was spotted aboard a Delta plane with his mask dangling under his chin for most of the flight, according to a report.

An image of the Republican lawmaker aboard the Thursday flight from Atlanta to Jackson, Mississippi, was tweeted by Matt Harringer, a Democratic media consultant who works for an advertising and media company in Washington, DC.

“I’ve seen enough Republican senators test positive to tweet this photo,” Harringer wrote. “@SenatorWicker – because you refused to wear a mask on our @Delta flight last night, please let your fellow passengers know your status once you’ve been tested.”

The Trump administration the following day rejected a union petition calling for a federal requirement that masks be worn on planes, trains and buses, according to The Washington Post.

It said the Department of Transportation “embraces the notion that there should be no more regulations than necessary.”

Harringer shared three time-stamped images — one at 8:37 p.m. while the plane was on the ground, one at 9:27 and one at 9:46, as it prepared for landing — showing Wicker’s mask hanging uselessly, the paper reported.

The airline — which has banned more than 400 people for refusing to wear mask — said it takes its face-covering mandate very seriously, but offered no criticism of the senator Monday. The carrier is overseen by the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation, which Wicker chairs.

“In this case, all customers followed all crew member instructions regarding our mask requirements,” Delta spokeswoman Lisa Hanna told The Washington Post.

Although she did not dispute the time-stamped photos, Hanna said a flight attendant recalled just two instances in which Wicker wasn’t wearing the mask properly. She asked him to adjust it in both cases, which he did, Hanna told the paper.