Vaccination-To-Fly Rule Is Being Reconsidered; Biden’s Covid Advisors Are Reacting to New Developments
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Vaccination Requirement To Fly
WASHINGTON, D.C. (December 5, 2021) - Now that Dr. Anthony Fauci has publicly suggested a rule requiring airline passengers to be vaccinated, after President Joe Biden had promised to consider such a rule if it were recommended, his Covid advisors are considering such a proposal in the light of more than a dozen recent developments, says public interest law professor John Banzhaf, who has been in contact with several key experts, and whose earlier recommendations have now come to pass.
After all, although Biden promised the American public that he would use all of his presidential powers to fight the pandemic, and the new Covid wave - despite all of his importuning and other measures - is still causing unprecedented numbers of Covid cases and thousands of unnecessary deaths, neither he nor his spokespersons have ever publicly provided a reason not to benefit from the experience of both Canada and France, to take this simple step despite many dozens of editorials and experts calling for it.
Many studies have shown that the most effective way to persuade holdouts to become vaccinated is to require it - as many cities and other countries have already done - for various activities, but Biden's vaccination mandates are largely inoperative and/or tied up in court battles, while this newest Covid wave continues to sweep across the country.
Indeed, notes Banzhaf, another court has just issued a preliminary injunction closing down his military mandatory vaccination policy, ruling that "our nation asks the men and women in our military to serve, suffer, and sacrifice. But we do not ask them to lay aside their citizenry and give up the very rights they have sworn to protect…."
Here, says the law professor, are more than a dozen recent developments which Biden's Covid team are considering in deciding whether to not to recommend a rule that passengers on domestic flights show proof that they have been vaccinated; and/or in some alternative formulations, at least have recovered from Covid.
Such a rule would create a strong incentive for holdouts to become vaccinated, provide additional protection for airline passengers, especially from the much more readily transmissible Omicron variant, and would be a dramatic step - supported by over 90% of the country according to a recent poll - towards raising Biden's sinking poll numbers regarding his key promise of dealing with the pandemic, argues Banzhaf. Here are the new developments.
- The country's ever changing and confusing Covid guidelines are leading many to believe that official advice is not longer valid, and should no longer be followed, because it is no longer driven by science.
- Once Dr. Fauci's support for a vaccination requirement for flying was reported, many dozens of editorials have called for it, and many more have questioned why such a simple requirement hasn't already been adopted. Indeed, as the Boston Globe put it, "if proof of vaccination will soon be required in restaurants, bars, and nightclubs in Boston (as it already is in other cities), why not airplanes?"
- At least two major Western countries - Canada and France - require airline passengers to be vaccinated. These rules are well accepted, do not cause unreasonable delays, and help protect passengers and others from Covid; in addition they provide a strong additional and effective incentive for people to become vaccinated.
- Nothing the government has done so far seems to have reduced - much less effectively protected the country - from the current new surge; one now increasingly sickening young children and other susceptible populations.
- The promised increases in testing, even if they are eventually effectively implemented, will do little to actually slow the exponential spread of Covid disease and deaths. Clearly something more must be done, and done very quickly.
- Many commentators are suggesting that, to reverse his collapsing low rating regarding his handling of the pandemic, Biden must take dramatic action - a bold step - quickly, and not continue trying to rely upon begging anti-vaxxers to change their minds.
- Since medical treatments for Covid remain largely unavailable, even when effective, nothing short of measures to jump start massive numbers of additional vaccinations is likely to help save lives and reduce hospitalizations.
- Courts have found that Biden's other governmental vaccination requirements have fatal legal flaws, and virtually none are currently in effect.
- Moreover, many legal experts are predicting that arguments this Friday will indicate that the Supreme Court will not uphold Biden's key mandates requiring vaccinations for employees of large firms and for health-care workers.
- Dozens of European and other countries have shown that even much stricter (and more encompassing and intrusive) vaccination requirements can be imposed if persons who have recovered from Covid are classified as "vaccinated."
- Moreover, political and public opposition to a vaccine requirement for airline passengers can easily be slashed even further, if necessary, by initially exempting children, and requiring only one shot for adult passengers.
- It's becoming increasingly difficult to argue that vaccine requirements for flying are unnecessary and/or unreasonable since so many jurisdictions (including, e.g., Chicago, D.C., Boston, Philadelphia, and Los Angeles) - as well as ever growing numbers of schools, colleges, universities, entertainment and sports venues, and even restaurants - are requiring proof of vaccinations for admission.
- Concerns about possible problems and delays with implementing such a rule have been debunked by experts, and the experience of both Canada and France.
Banzhaf notes that although Biden's Covid advisors are considering several different options, Fauci's suggestion of requiring airline passengers to be vaccinated has received the most publicity and support, and would probably save more lives and yet be less expensive than all others which have been publicly discussed.