Bernie Sanders Asks Fauci About Dangers of Airlines Filling Planes to Capacity

Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) is voicing concerns about the federal government’s failure to enforce social distancing guidelines in the aviation and transportation industries, namely American Airlines.

During Tuesday’s hearing with the Senate Health Committee, Sanders asked Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Director Dr. Robert Redfield and National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases’ Dr. Anthony Fauci why the federal government is not making more of an effort to enforce social distancing guidelines on buses and airplanes.

“We’re told over and over again … stay apart, at least six feet apart, if you can,” Sanders said.

He continued, “Just the other day, however, American Airlines announced they were going to fill up all of their planes, and other airlines have done the same. So you’re going to have people going from New York to California, five, six hours, sitting inches apart from each other.”

Sanders also noted that the problem spans further than the aviation industry as he highlighted how bus riders across the U.S. are typically packed on buses “like sardines.”

Sanders wanted to know why has the federal government not issued guidelines to prevent that from occurring.

Fauci acknowledged Sanders’ concerns saying, “Obviously, that is something of concern. I’m not sure what went into that decision-making.”

See their exchange below (1:14:40):

Sanders also highlighted that the lack of regard for social distancing contradicts everything Fauci and Redfield have stressed over the past several weeks. Then he posed a question about the situation saying, “The president issues a lot of executive orders, why haven’t we stopped that type of activity?”

Then, Redfield chimed in with a response to the Vermont senator’s question, as he blatantly criticized the airline for its decision.

“I can tell you that when they announced that the other day, obviously, there was substantial disappointment with American Airlines,” Redfield said. “A number of airlines had decided to keep the middle seat. I can say this is under critical review, right now, by us at CDC. We don’t think it’s the right message.”

The Senate hearing comes just days after American Airlines announced its intent to move forward with full capacity flights beginning on July 1, as previously reported on IJR.

Despite health concerns amid the coronavirus pandemic, American Airlines has expressed confidence in the safety protocols implemented as part of the company’s Clean Commitment initiative introduced by its new Travel Health Advisory Panel.

As of Tuesday afternoon, there are more than 2.6 million known coronavirus cases in the United States.


  1. You can tell this socialist loves fascism. Why doesn’t he just move his sorry butt to Venezuela or Russia? These loony liberals complain about Russia 24/7 but want to turn the US into exactly that.

  2. Every time this cockroach opens his mouth he weakens the nation. Would shed no tears if this human waste went to the light.

  3. Yep, American Airlines is my trusted pandemic advisor……..Maybe Trump Airlines was my expert business advisor too? And Trump University was rated the number one business school? And Trump does not ever, ever lie?

    1. And maybe people should educate themselves for their own health safety and use their own brains to decide what they think is best for them?

      1. How about not elect to inject themselves into a flying sardine can with probably multiple infected carriers shedding viruses into the air because few of them will bother to wear recommended protection – AKA masks.

        1. Lucky for America, we have the freedom to choose. Give me liberty or give me death!

          1. Wearing a mask temporarily, to protect everyone including yourself, does not deny you any liberty.

            If everyone possible had worn masks as soon as possible and followed the guidelines earlier and more diligently sooner, we would not be having this resurgence today. Tens of thousands new cases per day shows that we did it wrong. Seriously wrong.

            That’s your fault, too. You are part of this surge.

          2. Many did wear masks. Many did isolate. Cleaning supplies have run out. This, “highly contagious” virus has been going on for 8 months now and has a lower mortality rate than diabetes. And STILL the numbers aren’t going down. Of course, when you throw in pneumonia, influenza, and can’t get reliable testing, the numbers are as believable as Hillary’s poll numbers. Or Biden’s poll numbers.

Comments are closed.