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U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi. Photo: Al Drago/Bloomberg via Getty Images

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) announced Tuesday that members will be allowed to remove their masks on the House floor while recognized to address the chamber.

Why it matters: The move is a relaxing of the House's COVID-19 safety guidelines. Pelosi introduced a mask requirement in July 2020 after several Republican members refused to wear them.

  • In December she warned members that those who refused to weak masks on the floor wouldn't be granted speaking time, per The Hill.

The big picture: Masks will still be required when members are not speaking on the floor, and Pelosi noted that the new guidelines are in accordance with recommendations from the Capitol's attending physician.

What they're saying: "To be clear, members and staff must wear masks in the hall of the House at all times, except that a member may remove their mask when recognized by the chair," she said.

  • "In addition, members presiding as chair may remove their mask when speaking."

Go deeper

Pelosi's Republican playbook

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

As Republicans fight among themselves, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) is showing the myriad ways she deals with the GOP herself.

Between the lines: We've seen Pelosi cut opponents off at the knees, like she did with President Trump, or pretend to forget their names, as she did to Sen. Ron Johnson (R-Wis.). Now she's feeding oppo research against her House counterpart, Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.), so others can use the same harsh rhetoric to frame the Republicans as the party of dysfunction.

May 11, 2021 - Health

Axios-Ipsos poll: 'Normal' is in sight

Data: Axios/Ipsos Poll; Note: 3.2% margin of error; Chart: Axios Visuals

For the first time since the pandemic began, less than half of Americans (43%) say returning to their "normal" pre-coronavirus lives would pose a large or moderate risk, according to the latest installment of the Axios/Ipsos Coronavirus Index.

The big picture: This tipping point comes as nearly two thirds of respondents in our weekly national poll say they've gotten at least one shot.

FDA authorizes Pfizer COVID vaccine for 12- to 15-year-olds

Photo: Gabby Jones/Bloomberg via Getty Images

The Food and Drug Administration authorized the emergency use of the Pfizer-BioNTech coronavirus vaccine for 12- to 15-year-old adolescents, the agency announced on Monday.

Why it matters: The emergency authorization marks a critical milestone in the push to get more Americans vaccinated and fully reopen schools for in-person learning this fall.