House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) noted that the Centers for Disease Control’s (CDC) recent mask guidance update is based on a study that evaluated the efficacy of a COVID-19 vaccine that is “not approved in America.”
“I just left speaking with Dr. Monahan from the House. He said he used the CDC recommendation on a report that hasn’t been printed yet,” McCarthy said on the House floor, referring to Dr. Brian P. Monahan, the attending physician of Congress.
“He did not know that the report is based upon India, about a vaccine that’s not approved in America, and now he did not know that it didn’t even pass peer-review,” the GOP leader said, referring to a CDC study published July 27.
The CDC report, in part, notes that “studies from India with vaccines not authorized for use in the United States have noted relatively high viral loads and larger cluster sizes associated with infections with Delta, regardless of vaccination status,” referring to the COVID-19 Delta variant. According to the CDC, the data suggests that “breakthrough Delta infections are transmissible.”
McCarthy argued that it’s likely that House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) and other top doctors weren’t aware of the CDC’s report.
“That’s why vaccinated people in this House now have to wear a mask. There is no science, but I guess the Speaker must have not known that. Why wouldn’t the Speaker know the facts? Do you know what frustrates Americans the most? Hypocrisy,” he added.
Some experts have questioned whether the CDC would provide data for its recommendation that unvaccinated and vaccinated individuals wear masks in high-transmission areas.
In the text of its masking guidance, the agency cited “CDC COVID-19 Response Team, unpublished data, 2021.” CDC Director Rochelle Walensky spoke to reporters Tuesday and cited “new scientific data” but provided few details.