Jen Psaki, the White House Press Secretary, shocked many with her answer to a reporter’s question about needing visitors to provide proof of vaccination.
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Asked about @TheJusticeDept seizing personal phone records of journalists during the @POTUS45 administration, @PressSec replies "I would send you to the Department of Justice for any comment on their intentions moving forward."
— Steve Herman (@W7VOA) May 21, 2021
Psaki responded, “That’s not the position we’re going to play.” The announcement comes after the White House stated that no federal mandate for “vaccine passports” would be released.
“White House press secretary Jen Psaki announced at a Friday press conference that President Joe Biden’s administration has no plans to enforce a federal vaccine requirement or database,” the Daily Caller reported last week.
According to Newsy, Psaki explained the White House’s stance on the contentious “vaccine passports.”
.@PressSec on vaccine passports: we are not currently considering federal mandates… Private sector companies may decide that they want to have requirements. Thats up to them. We have no plans to change our approach from the the federal government.
— Kellan Howell (@kellanhowell) May 14, 2021
“At this time, we are not seeking federal mandates… “Private companies can decide that they want requirements,” Psaki explained. “It’s all up to them. We have no intention to depart from the federal government’s approach.”
Beyond the privacy concerns raised by monitoring whether or not Americans have received experimental vaccinations, such digital “passports” could be in violation of the presumed “freedom to fly” guaranteed by the Fifth Amendment. As a result, some states have outlawed them.
Florida, Texas, Mississippi, Montana, South Carolina, and Arkansas are among the states that have made it illegal to imprison vaccine passports. In total, at least 18 states have enacted some kind of prohibition or restriction.