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The Speaker of the House, 81, did not mince words Wednesday when asked to weigh in on the House Minority Leader's criticism of the House mask mandate recently reinstated by Capitol physician Brian Monahan.
"He's such a moron," she told reporters while entering an SUV outside the Capitol, according to CNN.
Pelosi's deputy chief of staff Drew Hammill would not confirm if the House Majority Leader had used the word "moron" but did confirm that she believes "saying a mask requirement is 'not a decision based on science' is moronic."
The speaker's comment comes in response to a tweet posted by McCarthy, 56, on Tuesday suggesting the decision to mask up again was not based on science.
Caroline Brehman/CQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty House Speaker Nancy Pelosi
"Make no mistake — The threat of bringing masks back is not a decision based on science, but a decision conjured up by liberal government officials who want to continue to live in a perpetual pandemic state," McCarthy wrote.
Congressman Tim Ryan criticized McCarthy's comments as well. During a House floor meeting on Wednesday, the 48-year-old Ohio Democrat used his time to chide the "immature" California Republican for disregarding Monahan's decision.
"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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McCarthy fired back Wednesday and accused Pelosi of being hypocritical on the subject of masking up.
"This is no different than her telling people they couldn't go out when she's getting her hair done," he told reporters, referencing the controversy Pelosi faced after visiting a San Francisco salon for an indoor appointment while the service was prohibited under California's COVID-19 guidelines.
"Just today, I watched her in a private meeting not wearing a mask. So, do as [she says] but not as she does?" McCarthy added.
Also on Wednesday, McCarthy argued on the House floor that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's new mask recommendation was not applicable in the House, claiming 85% of its members are vaccinated.
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Ryan accused McCarthy of attempting to "score cheap political points" with his comments and called his actions "appalling."
"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," Ryan said. "That is beneath us. That is beneath us."