Ralph Norman, who is a member of the Republican party and a lawmaker in the United States House of Representatives, tested positive for COVID-19. The Representative from South Carolina is one of the three GOP members who is attempting to sue House Speaker Nancy Pelosi for implementing rules that would charge fines for not wearing a mask on the House floor.

Norman, who is 68 years old, has reportedly been fully vaccinated against the coronavirus since February 2021. However, according to his social media posts, Norman has quarantined himself after experiencing minor symptoms of the virus and then testing positive.

The federal lawsuit, which was reportedly initiated in June this year, revolves around a mask mandate instated by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi. The mandate would fine the lawmakers in violation.

The fine, which amounts to $500, was challenged on a judicial scale by Norman along with Kentucky lawmaker and Republican Thomas Massie and Georgia Representative Marjorie Taylor Greene. 

The mask mandate in the United States House of Representatives was instated by Speaker Pelosi after the three lawmakers appeared on the House floor without wearing a mask in May earlier this year. 

The mandate has been tagged as unconstitutional by the three lawmakers who initiated the federal lawsuit.

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“The masking requirement was an attempt to prescribe what shall be orthodox in politics, medicine, and science, despite a deep divide over these issues of opinion”, the legal representation of the three Representatives wrote in a document, according to reports from ABC News.

The statement added, “It has been used to force Plaintiffs and other members of the minority party to be instruments for fostering public adherence to this ideological point of view that Plaintiffs find unacceptable”, ABC News reported.

The news comes as the Delta variant of COVID-19 has been tightening its grip on the United States as cases and rate of hospitalisation surges in the country.