The Centers for Disease Control is signaling its support for mandatory vaccine “passports” may be the way forward for a nation that has all but beaten the COVID pandemic. CDC Director Rochelle Walensky discussed the controversial development on CNN.
The CNN host asked Walensky about European nations requiring “health passes” for citizens to get into public places, such as bars and nightclubs. Her response was disconcerting. Watch:
“You know, I think some communities are doing that,” Walensky said. “And that may very well be a path forward.”
“I do want to sort of comment that in some fully vaccinated venues, if there are people… if they are unmasked, and there are few people who are transmitting there, as a fully vaccinated person it is possible to pick up disease in those settings,’ she continued. “We have seen that in some of our outbreak investigations this summer.”
This is a new narrative the CDC has begun pushing on Tuesday. The USA Today reported on the development.
“CDC Director Dr. Rochelle Walensky said new data shows the delta variant, which accounts for more than 80% of the new infections in the U.S., behaves ‘uniquely differently’ from its predecessors and could make vaccinated people infectious,” the article notes.
“Information on the delta variant from several states and other countries indicates that in rare occasions some vaccinated people infected with the delta variant after vaccination may be contagious and spread the virus to others,” Walensky said in announcing new guidance, which reverses a CDC recommendation in May. “This new science is worrisome and unfortunately warrants an update to our recommendation.”
The CDC recently reversed mask guidance for fully vaccinated adults and schoolchildren, recommending they be worn outdoors in areas of high COVID transmission.
Even as there is a surge in cases for the “Delta variant,” there has not been an accompanying drastic increase in mortality rates, which are still below 300 total per day in the United States. There are at least 69% of adult Americans who have gotten their first COVID vaccination shot.
The Department of Justice’s Office of Legal Counsel on Monday the U.S. federal government and state governments, as well as private corporations, the green light to mandate COVID vaccines at will.
“As access to the COVID-19 vaccines has become widespread, numerous educational institutions, employers, and other entities across the United States have announced that they will require individuals to be vaccinated against COVID-19 as a condition of employment, enrollment, participation, or some other benefit, service, relationship, or access,” the DOJ’s Office of Legal Counsel wrote in an opinion. “For instance, certain schools will require vaccination in order for students to attend class in person, and certain employers will require vaccination as a condition of employment.”
The Justice Department has effectively announced that it will not prosecute complaints against vaccine mandates as a violation of Americans’ civil rights or due process rights.
“Three major government entities – the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, California and New York City – said Monday they would require some or all of their government employees to get vaccinated or be tested weekly,” Fox News reported.
“Some colleges, both public and private, are requiring their students to get vaccinated before returning this fall. Governments — particularly the state of California and New York City — are also previewing plans to require vaccines for certain public workers,” CNN added.
On Tuesday, President Biden weighed in on the federal vaccine mandates.
“Will you require all federal employees to get vaccinated?” a reporter asked.
“That’s under consideration right now,” Biden said. “But if you’re not vaccinated, you’re not nearly as smart as I thought you were.”
The Biden administration is now reportedly considering mandating that all federal employees be vaccinated or face routine COVID testing and other requirements. This is quite a change from when White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki said vaccine mandates are “not the government’s role.”