Sen. Cruz Fights to Block the American Government from Establishing COVID Vaccine Passports
The credibility of the CDC is in tatters because leadership of the CDC has been willing to allow science to become politicized
WASHINGTON, D.C. - U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas), member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, today participated in a committee markup on three bills, one of which seeks to create a fund for global health initiatives. Sen. Cruz introduced two amendments to prevent the federal government from creating a vaccine passport system and vaccine database to track Americans based on their vaccination status. Read excerpts of his remarks below.
WATCH: Sen. Cruz: CDC Making Decisions Based on Politics, Not Science
Upon introducing his second amendment, Sen. Cruz said:
"This is an amendment that would prohibit U.S. participation in the creation of a vaccine passport. Let me say I think there are a lot of Texans. I think there are a lot of Americans across the country, that are very frustrated at the government responses to COVID-19. I think the decision yesterday by the CDC to reverse its guidance and mandate masks for vaccinated people is the kind of decision that is infuriating people across this country. I believe the CDC's decision yesterday was politics. It wasn't science. It was a decision that somehow pretends vaccines don't work.
"The CDC, months ago, rightly concluded that vaccinated people don't need to wear masks because the whole purpose of a vaccine is to not get the disease. That decision was right. The science hasn't changed. The only thing that has changed is the politics. A year and a half ago, the CDC was one of if not the most respected scientific and medical organization in the country. Today, the credibility of the CDC is in tatters because leadership of the CDC has been willing to allow science to become politicized. We've seen Dr. Fauci take virtually every position on virtually every subject under the sun."
"I believe that when government scientists and health experts allow politics to trump the science, it does enormous damage to the willingness of the American people to believe anything they have to say. I think one of the aspects of yesterday's decision that illustrates the arbitrariness of this is the brand new decree that everyone in schools must wear a mask. Doesn't matter if you're vaccinated or not. If you enter a school, you must wear a mask. Now, there's no great new scientific discovery that mandates this new edict. Indeed, we've seen throughout this crisis that while COVID-19 can be very, very serious for vulnerable populations, for the very elderly, for those with significant comorbidities, that we've seen the incidence of serious disease with COVID-19 among children is very, very low. And there's no credible demonstration that children are a significant vector for spreading the disease. But the CDC, nonetheless, said anyone who steps in in a school must be masked. It's not complicated. Why? They did so because the teacher union bosses demanded that. That is a political decision. Political players can make political decisions. It wouldn't surprise me to see elected officials deciding, ‘I'm going to give the union bosses what they demand.' But that is not what the Center for Disease Control should be doing.
"My view on COVID is it is serious. We should take serious steps to combat it. We have taken extraordinary steps to combat COVID-19, including an unprecedented effort to develop vaccines, hundreds of millions of which have been administered as we've come together and fought against this disease. But we've also seen stupid policies. We've seen lockdowns across this country that have shut down small businesses, destroyed restaurants, destroyed bars, destroyed generational businesses. We've seen schools shut down, tens of millions of children sent home for over a year, children who are falling behind academically, who are falling behind in reading, who are falling behind in math. And the children being hurt are disproportionately low income. They're disproportionately Hispanic and African American, and nonetheless, the edicts to shut down schools have continued. They were utterly unjustifiable.
"My view is simple: we should not have mandates. What does that mean? That means no mask mandate. That means no vaccine mandates. And I will say, it was interesting as I was reading through this COVID bill, section 107, talking about what foreign governments are doing. An awful lot of the description of foreign governments can apply to our own government. So section 107 of this bill says, ‘Certain foreign governments have taken measures in response to COVID-19 that violate the human rights of their citizens without clear public health justification.' Well, I think you could delete the word ‘foreign' in that because we've seen governments here domestically arbitrarily exercising power as well."
"I might remind you that Anthony Fauci in those emails, asked Facebook to silence anyone who said anything different than the government directive on speech, including, if you suggested the origin of the Wuhan virus was actually at Wuhan, China, in a Chinese government lab. And Facebook willingly complied and censored that view. You're not allowed to have that view that this escape from the government lab. Then miraculously a couple of months ago, the administration was forced to recognize, ‘Well, yeah, there's actually very significant evidence that the Wuhan virus escape from a Chinese government lab in Wuhan, and beyond that, that it may well have been developed with government research with American taxpayer funding, on ‘gain of function' research.' Those views that were banned for a year are now acknowledged as having very significant scientific basis behind them. My view there should be no mandates, no mask mandates, no vaccine mandates, and no vaccine passports, and what my amendment focuses on is just the last piece of it - vaccine passports. I will say, finally, this should be a proposition that is bipartisan. The Biden administration at least claims to oppose vaccine passports."
"Vaccines are effective. I've been vaccinated. My wife has been vaccinated. My parents have been vaccinated. My wife's parents have been vaccinated. I've been urging Americans to get vaccinated, but I also believe in individual liberty. I believe in freedom. It's your damn choice whether you get vaccinated. I think it made sense for me in consultation with my doctor, but you have the ability to make your choice."
"When the CDC puts out this rule [that] even if you've been vaccinated you've got to put a mask on, it is the Biden administration that is telling people vaccines don't work. I actually understand vaccines do work, which is why that is an arbitrary rule to require people [that] have been vaccinated to put a mask on. By the way, we see the kabuki theater here. Everyone here has been vaccinated. As soon as the CDC said that, we saw Democrats putting on masks, not because the vaccine suddenly stopped working yesterday, but it was working two days ago. Nope. Because now it is a virtue signal of submissiveness to wear a mask."