Sunday morning talking heads

AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite

The CDC’s new mask guidance and America’s battle with the Delta variant are the top stories on this morning’s Sunday shows, but the star guest is booked for different reasons. That’s Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, who’s set for “State of the Union” to discuss the brewing Democratic civil war over infrastructure. AOC will make the progressive case for a gajillion-dollar package and repeat her threats to tank the Senate’s bipartisan roads-and-bridges bill if the left doesn’t get what it wants from the reconciliation component of the process. She’ll also defend her low-rent racial demagoguery at the expense of Kyrsten Sinema, Joe Manchin, and the other Senate centrists who are trying to hammer out a deal. Manchin himself will be on “State of the Union” and “Face the Nation” to respond.

As for the pandemic, Anthony Fauci will chat with “This Week” and “Face the Nation” about the new masking rules despite Frank Luntz’s desperate warnings that he’s doing more harm than good as the face of the national vaccination effort. Expect him to be pressed on the Provincetown study that inspired the CDC’s switch on masking: Is a superspreader event truly representative of how most vaccinated Americans interact with others? Elsewhere, Fauci’s boss at NIH, Francis Collins, will try to explain to “Face the Nation” and “Fox News Sunday” why the vaccinated should have to mask up to protect people who refuse to protect themselves by getting their shots.

Scott Gottlieb, the best public health communicator on COVID, will follow Collins on “Face the Nation.” As will Sharon Alroy-Preis, the head of public health services in Israel, who’ll defend her country’s decision to recommend booster shots for senior citizens. That debate will be had here in the U.S. soon. I know how I’d bet on what the eventual recommendation will be. The full line-up is at the AP.