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Iowa Senate approves ban on ‘vaccine passports’

DES MOINES — The Iowa Senate has sent the governor a bill to ban state and local governments in Iowa from issuing ID cards that show they got a Covid-19 shot. Senate President Jake Chapman, a Republican from Adel, opposes the idea of so-called “vaccine passports.:

“We will protect Iowans from being forced by tyrannical governments to inject their body with chemicals that they may or may not wish to have,” Chapman said.

A month ago, Governor Reynolds called on legislators to pass the bill. Iowa employers may still ask employees if they’ve been vaccinated, but the bill forbids businesses, non-profits and other institutions from requiring customers and visitors to provide proof they’ve been vaccinated. Chapman was the only senator to speak before a vote was taken yesterday.

“Iowans don’t want to be forced to have a chemical injected into their body to be able to go to a baseball game, to go to the grocery store, to live their lives,” he said.

The bill provides an exception so hospitals, nursing homes and other health care facilities may ask patients and visitors whether they’ve had a Covid shot. Thirty Republicans and two Democrats voted for the bill. The Senate’s Democratic leader has suggested the odds the state would ever issue vaccine passports are about equal to the chances he’ll be the Green Bay Packers quarterback and the bill’s not needed.

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