'Made in China' KN95 Masks Distributed to Congress Leave Conservatives Outraged

Conservatives have expressed outrage after it emerged that KN95 masks distributed to congressional offices were made in China, with House Republicans demanding answers from Speaker Nancy Pelosi.

More than 120 GOP lawmakers have signed a letter to Pelosi describing their "disbelief and outrage" that the masks were being handed out "when American alternatives are available."

Some have also been posting about their anger on social media, but Pelosi's office told Fox News on Thursday that the Architect of the Capitol was responsible for the purchase rather than any "House entity."

Nonetheless, Republican lawmakers blamed her for the decision to use Chinese-made masks.

"Speaker Pelosi sent out N-95 masks to every House office. Unfortunately, I can't read the instructions," tweeted Rep. Bryan Steil of Wisconsin.

Steil shared a photo of one of the KN95 masks as well as a small certificate that came with it. The certificate was written in both Chinese and English.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has encouraged Americans to wear KN95 or N95 masks, explaining on its website that N95 masks offer the highest level of protection.

Rep. Troy Balderson of Ohio tweeted a video of the masks distributed in Congress, with the caption: "Speaker Pelosi's Capitol Hill mask mandate now comes with a complimentary KN95 emblazoned with MADE IN CHINA.

"No thank you, Madam Speaker. I support MADE IN THE USA!"

Rep. Bill Posey of Florida tweeted on Wednesday: "I wonder if @SpeakerPelosi knew before she purchased and distributed KN95 masks which prominently say 'MADE IN CHINA,' that a Florida company is currently making 2 million N95 masks a day, employing 350 Americans. #BuyAmerican #MakeAmerican."

Posey shared a Fox News article about the company, Advanced Concept Innovations in Polk County.

The Republican Office of the Committee on House Administration tweeted: "Why in the world is the House purchasing hundreds of thousands of KN95 masks that are made in China? Ranking Member @RodneyDavis and more than 120 other House Republicans are asking @SpeakerPelosi for answers."

That letter says if members are required to wear masks officials should "at least respect the institution and the taxpayers enough not to line the pockets of our adversary whose actions led to the current pandemic."

It continues: "Under your tenure, you have closed the Capitol to the American people, implemented COVID-19 protocols in the House that conflict with the Senate, and now, you have handed out masks from China when American alternatives are available.

"Quite simply, there is no reason that our elected officials and government workers should be given KN95 masks manufactured in China."

A spokesperson for Pelosi told Fox News on Thursday that "no House entity was involved in this purchase" and said the Architect of the Capitol had "made the purchase."

Newsweek has asked Nancy Pelosi's office and the Architect of the Capitol for comment.

Nancy Pelosi Wears a Mask at COP26
Speaker Nancy Pelosi at COP26 in Glasgow, Scotland, on November 9, 2021. More than 120 Republicans have signed a letter to Pelosi complaining about KN95 masks. Ian Forsyth/Getty Images