Senate Republican Leader on Gov.’s Call for Vaccine Passports

From Oregon Senate Republican Caucus

Instead of trusting Oregonians to protect themselves and others, the Governor is now asking places of businesses to play vaccine police.

Following last week’s updated mask guidance from the CDC that all vaccinated individuals need not wear a mask in most settings, today Governor Brown’s Oregon Health Authority rolled out a vaccine passport scheme for Oregonians.

“Vaccine passports are completely contrary to Oregonians’ sense of privacy,” Senate Republican Leader Fred Girod (R-Lyons) said. “In a democracy, having to present proper paperwork to engage in everyday activities is a complete violation of public trust and an invasion of privacy. This kind of dictatorial control over the everyday lives of Oregonians must stop. The Governor should immediately rescind this misguided edict and trust Oregonians.”

The Biden Administration is pursuing a strategy that puts faith in the American people by ditching plans for a federal vaccine passport. White House Press Secretary, Jen Psaki said in an April 6 press conference, “The government is not now, nor will be, supporting a system that requires Americans to carry a credential. Our interest is very simple from the federal government, which is Americans’ privacy and rights should be protected, and so that these systems are not used against people unfairly.”

To date, Oregon is one of the first, if not the first, to mandate that its residents present credentials to engage in everyday activities without a mask. Struggling small businesses will now need to hire extra staff to question Oregonians’ medical history at these checkpoints, or reject scientific recommendations by still mandating masks for vaccinated Oregonians.

“At every turn, Governor Brown has mistrusted Oregonians to protect themselves and each other. She has resorted to dictatorial edict after dictatorial edict. It needs to stop now. The pandemic is receding. If she can’t give Oregonians their freedom back now, when will she? The Legislature needs to step up now and rein in the Governor’s power to stop her erosion of democratic norms.”