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American Airlines is reviewing claims Sen. Ted Cruz didn't wear a mask on a flight

A spokesperson for Cruz said he had taken off the mask to take a drink, but a separate photo posted on Twitter claimed to show him sitting at the gate mask-less.
Credit: AP
FILE - In this March 31, 2020 file photo, American Airlines planes stored at Pittsburgh International Airport sit idle on a closed taxiway in Imperial, Pa. (AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar, File)

Updated after American Airlines released a new statement Monday evening. 

American Airlines says it is reviewing allegations that Sen. Ted Cruz didn't wear a mask while on a flight Sunday.

A tweet of a photo of Cruz sitting on an airplane, holding a coffee and scrolling his phone was posted on Sunday night. 

The post has been retweeted more than 30,000 times.

"We are committed to protecting the health and safety of all customers, and we are reviewing the details of this matter," the airline said on Twitter.

A spokesperson for Cruz said the senator had removed his mask to drink.

A later statement from American Airlines said, "we expect our customers to comply with our policies when they choose to travel with us." 

Cruz flew Sunday on one of American's domestic regional airlines.

Airlines officials said that after reviewing the incident, they "reached out to Sen. Cruz to affirm the importance of this policy as part of our commitment to protecting the health and safety of the traveling public.”

American's policy released earlier during the pandemic allows people to remove a mask to eat and drink, but that a face covering must otherwise be worn. 

"Yesterday during his flight he removed his mask to drink and put it back on afterward," the statement from Cruz's spokesperson said.

But a follow-up tweet from @hossehenad on Monday showed Cruz also sitting at the gate without a mask. 

American Airlines said in June that masks were required at the gate, as well as on flights, and that the airlines would "deny boarding to customers who don't comply." 

Cruz was in Granbury, Texas, on Sunday to attend an election rally ahead of the July 14 runoff. 

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