Capitol Attending Physician Brian Monahan announced that the House of Representatives is reinstating its mask mandate- accompanied by the threat of fines to members who don't comply – following updated guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) on the delta variant of the coronavirus. The White House also appears to be going back to mandated masks. A White House press representative was seen Tuesday swapping out a sign saying people are required to wear masks if unvaccinated for another, declaring masks are required regardless of vaccination status. [tweet_embed] July 29, 2021[/tweet_embed] On Tuesday, the CDC recommended that people who are vaccinated and in areas with high COVID-19 spread should wear masks indoors. The new recommendation is likely to prompt a raft of new mask mandates around the country and has already done so in the U.S. Capitol. "For the Congress, representing a collection of individuals traveling weekly from various risk areas (both high and low rates of disease transmission), all individuals should wear a well-fitted, medical-grade filtration mask (for example an ear loop surgical mask or a KN95 mask) when they are in an interior space," Monahan wrote in a letter sent to congressional staffers. This, the attending physician note, includes the House chamber, committee meetings and all House office buildings. The only explicit exceptions Monahan mentioned were for those who are actively speaking, seeking recognition from a chair at a committee hearing or those who are alone in a room. [tweet_embed] July 29, 2021[/tweet_embed] "To be clear, for meetings in an enclosed US House of Representatives controlled space, masks are REQUIRED," Monahan stressed. "Failure to wear a mask in the Hall of the House is subject to fines imposed for violation as contained in the previous House rule." Monahan explained the reasoning behind the decision in his letter, tracking closely with the reasoning of CDC Director Rochelle Walensky in his announcement Tuesday that the CDC would again recommend masks for unvaccinated people. "In the past two weeks, USA coronavirus cases have significantly increased, now approaching 100,000 cases per day. The delta variant virus has been detected in Washington, DC and in the Capitol buildings," Monahan said. "It represents a dire health risk to unvaccinated individuals and is not without some risk to the vaccinated individuals or their unvaccinated household contacts." [tweet_embed] July 29, 2021[/tweet_embed] He went on: "Despite the excellent protective value of the coronavirus vaccine in preventing hospitalization and death, there is still a possibility a fully-vaccinated individual could acquire infection in their nose and throat, mild symptoms, or the ability to transmit the coronavirus infection to others." Monahan further warned about the possibility of "long COVID" and cited the fact that some local governments have either mandated masks or recommended them already in light of the delta variant. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., on Wednesday noted that Monahan had made the decision to bring back the mandate on his own and insisted she was not involved.