White House press secretary Jen Psaki shot down rumors that President Joe Biden’s administration was exploring plans for a “vaccine passport” Tuesday, saying the White House had no intention to do so.
Many organizations have pushed the idea of requiring individuals to obtain a credential proving they have been vaccinated before they can participate in certain activities, such as airline travel. Psaki told reporters at a White House press briefing Tuesday there will be no federal mandate for vaccination and that the Biden administration would work to ensure that privately organized passports do not infringe on people’s privacy.
“The government is not now nor will we be supporting a system that requires Americans to carry a credential,” Psaki said. “There will be no federal vaccinations database and no federal mandate requiring everyone to obtain a single vaccination credential.”
“As these tools are being considered by the private and non-profit sectors, our interest is very simple from the federal government, which is Americans’ privacy and rights should be protected so these systems are not used against people unfairly,” she added. (RELATED: ‘If You Guys Want A Gun Show’: Gov. DeSantis Might Not Get Vaccinated On Camera Unless People Really Want To See It)
Psaki’s comments echo those of Dr. Anthony Fauci, who said Monday that the federal government was unlikely to impose a mandate.
Potential vaccine passports are incredibly unpopular among Republicans, with both Texas Gov. Greg Abbott and Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis signing executive orders banning even private passports in their states.
Texans shouldn’t be required to show proof of vaccination & reveal private health information just to go about their daily lives.
I issued an Executive Order that prohibits government-mandated vaccine passports in Texas.
Don’t tread on our personal freedoms. pic.twitter.com/weTbz4FKyH
— Greg Abbott (@GregAbbott_TX) April 6, 2021
Some countries, including China and Israel, have already created vaccine passports and associated databases. While the U.S. government won’t be imposing a passport requirement, Americans may have to get one regardless to travel internationally.