Freshman Congressman Rep. Nick LaLota (R-NY) Tuesday refused to attend Joe Biden’s reception for freshman house members in protest of White House COVID-19 protocols.
Particularly, LaLota objected to the “Attestation of Vaccination” every attendee was forced to complete prior to the event. The attestation asked whether the attendee was unvaccinated, partially vaccinated or fully vaccinated. Those not fully vaccinated or who refused to disclose their vaccination status were subjected to forced mask-wearing, and all members had to submit a negative COVID-19 test 24 hours in advance.
“Out of protest, I will not be attending President Biden’s gathering of Freshman House Members at the White House this week. Even though four months ago the President told ’60 Minutes’ that the pandemic is over, the White House is today enforcing arbitrary, outdated and unscientific pandemic protocols upon members of Congress who accepted the President’s invitation to meet him at the White House,” LaLota said in a statement.
“POTUS shouldn’t condition Members of Congress seeing him in person on being [vaccinated] or masking up + social distancing,” he added in a tweet Tuesday. “It’s 2023. A [vaccination] should be a choice between one’s family & their doctor and those who choose against should not be treated unequally. The science doesn’t support it.”
When New York Post reporter Steven Nelson asked White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre in Wednesday’s press briefing about LaLota’s boycott of Biden’s “arbitrary and unscientific” rules the press secretary responded, “COVID isn’t over.”
“We have protections in place to protect staff and the President of the United States. COVID isn’t over. We’ve been very clear about that. Hundreds of Americans are dying every day, and cases are increasing right now, today.”
Biden announced COVID was over in September.
When pressed why the attestation was necessary given the Omicron variant’s evasion of the COVID-19 shots, Jean-Pierre simply said, “[W]e listen to the experts, and we look at the data, and we — you know, we pay very close attention to science. And I just don’t have anything to say beyond that. That is something that our experts — we take their advice when it comes to things like that.”
On Sunday, attendees at Kamala Harris’ speech promoting abortion were also forced to first sign a similar “Attestation of Vaccination” form in which they affirmed their vaccination status. Anyone not fully vaccinated was ordered to submit a negative COVID test, wear a mask and physically distance themselves from others.
The White House indicated that the requirement to disclose one’s vaccination status and restrictions for those with a lower vaccination status were “in accordance with White House health and safety policies, and consistent with guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).”
However, contrary to the White House’s claim, the CDC in August changed its guidance on COVID-19 “prevention measures” to “no longer differentiate based on a person’s vaccination status.” CDC guidance also does not require vaccination status disclosure.
The form raises questions about whether the White House is aware that the COVID-19 injections do not prevent transmission, or even that COVID-19 itself is admittedly overhyped.