In a bid to tackle the devastation perpetrated by the contagious coronavirus, the strategy of the Biden administration to introduce a vaccine passport seems an ambitious plan.
The vaccine denial groups are on a roll to motivate people not to get vaccinated, so a vaccine passport will bring the vaccine denials to justice.
The vaccine passport will be a digital document that can help the vaccinated people to enjoy perks others cannot. These perks include traveling overseas and enjoying a score of domestic facilities.
The local service providers will also be under obligation to serve only the vaccinated people so that non-vaccinated Americans can rush towards vaccination to create a COVID-immune society.
However, Republicans are opposing the concept and relating it with their regressive ideas of voter suppression. According to them, the demand to show the vaccine passport to buy groceries by the Democrats who themselves oppose ID requirements for voting makes no sense.
What is the concept of a vaccine passport? How will it enhance the vaccination efforts of the United States to achieve immunity for its people, and how are Republicans using the concept to further their voter suppression and closed borders’ agenda? Let’s see.
Vaccine Passport: A Nightmare to Vaccine Denial Groups
All Americans who want to enjoy domestic facilities, including theatres, restaurants, grocery stores, and public places, will have to present a document to show that they are immune to coronavirus.
The appearance of the vaccine passport is not finalized yet. However, the concept is to show a digital, scannable document on a smartphone app or a hardcopy with the vaccination credentials presented on it.
The White House has confirmed that the aim is to make a simple, free, and open-source tool accessible to people, both digitally and on paper.
However, many advocates of the freedom of choice may perceive it as a tactic of “too much government” in people’s lives.
In response, White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki and COVID-19 adviser Andy Slavitt have already signaled that the government will only be involved in issuing the guidelines to the private developers instead of directly getting involved in the matter.
Republicans Attempt to Compare Vaccine Passport to Voter Suppression Techniques
While on the one hand, some perceive vaccine passports as an instrument to immunize the masses, Republicans think otherwise. Republicans seized an opportunity to attack their Democratic counterparts to make sense of their voter suppression and closed borders agenda.
House Minority Whip Steve Scalise told Fox News in his interview that if the Biden Administration is working on a vaccine passport, they have no moral ground to oppose the voter ID mandate.
House Judiciary Committee ranking member Jim Jordan also made comments on the matter. He said that it is astonishing that the Biden Administration is asking the American people to show proof of their vaccination, while, on the other hand, illegal immigrants from the southern borders are allowed to enter the United States without any kind of passports.
Representative Pete Sessions opined that vaccine credentials are an example of over-governance, as individuals should be responsible for their health themselves.
Republicans have long used voter ID requirements as a tool of their voter suppression, which they recently introduced in the newly-passed Georgia voting bill.
Minority groups in Republican-controlled states are kept away from voting practice in a deliberate attempt in several ways, and not issuing the voter ID is one of those ways.
Similarly, migrants entering from southern borders are kept in special camps before being allowed into the US to ensure that they are not affected by the coronavirus.
The opposing of the open borders by Republicans is not a new phenomenon, as they have often reiterated their ambitions of restricted immigration, which they also laid down in their latest border security proposal.
Connecting vaccine passports with the other agendas seems to be a propagandist approach, as COVID vaccination is a matter of life and death for the masses.
The ignorance of one person can affect millions, for which vaccine passports are a credible approach to maintain a database of potentially vulnerable individuals.
Efforts are underway for the implementation of the vaccine passport across the United States. The New York state administration is working to develop a smartphone app named Excelsior Pass, which will act as a vaccine passport.
Republican governors are trying to keep the system away from the red states. This includes the steps of the Florida governor, who said that these instruments are “completely unacceptable.”
This app will allow the citizens to present a recent COVID-19 test that could be either negative or positive.
The Biden Administration is working on implementing this plan, but at the end of the day, it can be a tussle of blue states vs. the red states, where Republicans will leave no stone unturned in banning them.