American Airlines said Monday that it was investigating after a photo was tweeted of Senator Ted Cruz flying without a mask on one of its regional carriers. A spokesperson for Cruz said he wears a mask while traveling and had taken it off to drink and put it back on afterward.

American Airlines’ policy is that customers wear masks unless they are eating or drinking. The airline said it had reached out to Cruz to “affirm the importance of this policy as part of our commitment to protecting the health and safety of the traveling public.”

There is no mask visible in the photo, but Cruz is holding a drink. 

Captured today at 10:45am — @TedCruz on a commercial flight, refusing to wear a mask.

The photo of Cruz was shared by Hosseh Enad, who works with the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, who said he had gotten it from an acquaintance. 

Although Cruz quarantined early in the coronavirus pandemic after coming in contact with a person who tested positive at CPAC, he has become a vocal skeptic of lockdown policies. He visited a Dallas salon for a haircut the day it opened after the owner was arrested for violating lockdown policies.

“Hair salons & barbershops are open in TX today. Just got my hair cut for first time in 3 months at Salon ALa Mode to support Shelley Luther, who was wrongly imprisoned when she refused to apologize for trying to earn a living,” Cruz tweeted alongside a photo of him getting his haircut, with a mask. “Glad Shelley is out of jail & her business is open!”  

Alan He and Kris Van Cleave contributed to this report. 

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