Texas Republican Sen. Ted Cruz, a member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, introduced a bill Thursday to prohibit the federal government from requiring COVID-19 vaccines for children.
Cruz introduced the bill as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention approved the Pfizer/BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine for children ages 5 to 11.
“Parents should have the right to decide what is best for their children in consultation with their family doctor,” Cruz said in a news release.
“My view on the COVID-19 vaccine has remained clear: no mandates of any kind.”
NEW: Sen. Cruz Introduces Bill To Block The Federal Government And Public Schools From Mandating Covid-19 Vaccines For Kidshttps://t.co/nt9bd14m3D
— Steve Guest (@SteveGuest) November 4, 2021
Cruz noted President Joe Biden has repeatedly ignored the medical privacy rights and personal liberties of Americans when it comes to vaccine mandates.
The senator said his goal is to keep the government out of decisions related to a child’s health.
“President Biden and his administration have repeatedly ignored medical privacy rights and personal liberty by pushing unlawful and burdensome vaccine mandates on American businesses, and now they are preparing to push a mandate on kids by pressuring parents — all without taking into account relative risk or the benefits of natural immunity,” Cruz said.
“I am proud to introduce this legislation today to ensure President Biden and his administration stay out of decisions related to a child’s health — decisions best left to parents.”
Cruz’s bill will prohibit “the federal government and any recipient of federal funding from the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) and/or the CDC at the state, local, Tribal, or territorial level from requiring any individual aged 18 or younger from requiring a COVID-19 vaccine.”
As a result, school districts would not be able to impose a vaccine mandate for students under 18 without losing Title IV, Part A and Title II, Part A funding.
Under the bill, parental consent would be required for the vaccination of a minor using any COVID vaccine that is fully approved or authorized for emergency use.
On Tuesday, CDC Director Rochelle Walensky endorsed the recommendation from the CDC Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices for children 5 to 11 years old to be vaccinated with the Pfizer/BioNTech pediatric vaccine.
“CDC now expands vaccine recommendations to about 28 million children in the United States in this age group and allows providers to begin vaccinating them as soon as possible,” the CDC’s statement said.
The statement also noted the effectiveness of the vaccine in clinical trials.
“Vaccination, along with other preventative measures, can protect children from COVID-19 using the safe and effective vaccines already recommended for use in adolescents and adults in the United States. Similar to what was seen in adult vaccine trials, vaccination was nearly 91 percent effective in preventing COVID-19 among children aged 5-11 years,” the statement said.
“In clinical trials, vaccine side effects were mild, self-limiting, and similar to those seen in adults and with other vaccines recommended for children. The most common side effect was a sore arm.”
“Together, with science leading the charge, we have taken another important step forward in our nation’s fight against the virus that causes COVID-19,” Walensky said. “We know millions of parents are eager to get their children vaccinated and with this decision, we now have recommended that about 28 million children receive a COVID-19 vaccine.
“As a mom, I encourage parents with questions to talk to their pediatrician, school nurse or local pharmacist to learn more about the vaccine and the importance of getting their children vaccinated.”
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