Alaska Sen. Reinbold excused from floor sessions after being banned from Alaska Airlines

A woman in a dress and boots walks down a hallway.
Sen. Lora Reinbold walks the halls of the legislature before an announcement from Senate leadership that she had been stripped of most of her committee positions on Tuesday, January 21, 2020 in Juneau. (Rashah McChesney/KTOO)

Alaska Sen. Lora Reinbold, a Republican from Eagle River, has been excused from attending Senate floor sessions starting this weekend through next January.

She has been banned from flying on Alaska Airlines for refusing to wear a face mask and is arguing that she doesn’t have an alternative way of getting back and forth to Juneau. On Thursday she asked her fellow lawmakers to be excused.

“I move and ask unanimous consent to be excused from the call of the Senate from Sept. 11 through Jan. 15 because there is no airline other than Alaska Airline(s) that flies into Juneau during that period that I’m aware of,” she said. “The political ban is still in place as long as Biden’s illegitimate mask mandate is in place.”

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In general, legislators ask to be excused from floor sessions when they have another commitment that prevents them from attending.

Reinbold was barred from most of the Capitol briefly during the regular session for not wearing a mask and refusing to get tested for COVID-19. She eventually started to comply with the rules.

The Legislature is currently in its third special session of the year, which must end by Tuesday. No other special sessions have been announced before the regular session begins in January.

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