A move orchestrated by Senator J.D. Vance (R-OH) in September is now being dubbed a “political miracle.” The popular pro-Trump Republican defied the odds and was able to compel ten Democrats to side with him and the GOP minority on a pivotal piece of legislation to prevent the resurgence of mandated face masks.
By forcing Democrats from purple states to go on the record on mask mandates, which are unpopular in the country, Vance was able to draw substantial support from across the aisle.
As reported by Fox News, Vance’s “Freedom to Breathe Act,” was passed as an amendment to an appropriations bill on Wednesday. In a statement issued later that day, Vance called the amendment “a massive victory for personal freedom.”
“We saw countless abuses of authority throughout the COVID pandemic, and the American people were justifiably enraged by unscientific mask mandates.”
In a press release from Sep. 5th, given when Vance introduced the then-standalone bill, he explained, “We tried mask mandates once in this country. They failed to control the spread of respiratory viruses, violated basic bodily freedom, and set our fellow citizens against one another,” Vance said.
“This legislation will ensure that no federal bureaucracy, no commercial airline, and no public school can impose the misguided policies of the past. Democrats say they’re not going to bring back mask mandates – we’re going to hold them to their word.”
He concluded, “Today, the United States Senate took an emphatic step toward common sense and individual liberty. I’m proud of what we’ve accomplished here and look forward to continuing the fight,” according to Newsmax.
The release noted that the act would apply through the end of 2024 as was crafted to “prohibit any federal official, including the President, from issuing mask mandates applying to domestic air travel, public transit systems, or primary, secondary, and post-secondary schools.”
Furthermore, the new law will forbid “air carriers, transit authorities, and educational institutions,” from refusing service to people not wearing masks.
Vance described the necessity for the bill in remarks to the Senate on Sep. 9th.,
“I think that what our children most of all need, and I’m the father of three kids under the age of 7, they need us not to be ‘chicken little’ about every single respiratory pandemic and problem that confronts this country.”
“We are going to have people who get sick from viruses. It has always been thus. And the way to respond to it is with calmness, resolve, and strategic thinking. Not by pretending the world is ending because what has always happened is going to happen once again,” Vance added.
“We cannot repeat the anxiety, the stress, and the non-stop panic of the last couple of years. That’s what this legislation is about. End the mandates, end the panic and let’s get back to some common sense.”