Biden to potentially withhold funding from travel companies, cruises unless they implement vaccine requirement

Aug 6, 2021

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President Biden is considering withholding funding from certain institutions to encourage vaccinations, including travel companies, according to an anonymous source who spoke to the Washington Post.

“The Biden administration is considering using federal regulatory powers and the threat of withholding federal funds from institutions to push more Americans to get vaccinated,” the Post reported, and also said that such effort could apply to the 90 million-plus eligible Americans who remain unvaccinated at various institutions, including “long-term-care facilities, cruise ships and universities.”

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Thus far, the Biden administration has refrained from enforcing a federally mandated vaccine passport for both travel and daily use, despite growing pressure from airlines and health experts. Even so, the president has hinted at vaccination as a prerequisite for international travel.

Read more: The future of travel is vaccine certificates: These are the popular destinations and tourist attractions requiring proof of vaccination

Biden’s presidential powers would allow him to require proof of vaccination for domestic travel.

A vaccine mandate of some sort may be an inevitable necessity to combat the delta variant, says Dr. Anthony Fauci.

“If we continue to vaccinate and we get those 93 million people who are eligible people who are eligible for vaccinations who have not been vaccinated, if we do that in the immediate, intermediate and longterm, and do the mitigation right now, we will turn the Delta surge around,” Fauci said on Aug. 5. “I will guarantee you that that will happen if we do what I just outlined.”

Read more: White House under increasing pressure on vaccine passports, but it’s complicated

Just yesterday, the White House coronavirus response coordinator Jeff Zients confirmed that agency working groups are “developing plans” to open U.S. borders once again to foreign nations, including a vaccine requirement for incoming travelers.

“…Part of that planning is a phased approach that foreign nationals traveling to the United States may — there’s still policy work being done here — may need to have some type of a vaccine requirement, but that’s not a decision at this point,” Zients said in a press briefing on Aug. 5. “That’s one of the paths that’s being looked at and considered, but there are — there are alternative paths being looked at, at the same time.”

Featured photo of a vaccine clinic in Springfield, Mo., by Spencer Platt/Getty Images

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