It’s not just Donald Trump that is indifferent to the lives of Republican voters, it’s the Republican caucus in Congress.
Uncertainty about why only 75% of the House is confirmed as vaccinated against the coronavirus is fueling a debate about when the chamber can return to its normal rules of operation.
Between the lines: The other 25% of members have either refused to get the vaccine, have not reported getting it at home or are avoiding it because of medical conditions. Until the Office of Attending Physician is clear about this, it can’t make recommendations “regarding the modification or relaxation of existing social distancing guidelines.”
Congress has its own supply of the coronavirus vaccine. While it’s not certain which party is most to blame for any vaccine hesitancy, the phenomenon is higher among white Republicans than any other demographic group, as Axios has reported.
“I won’t be taking it. The survival rate is too high for me to want it,” 25-year-old Rep. Madison Cawthorn (R-N.C.) told Axios in December.
Why it matters: Multiple waves of voting, meant to ensure social distancing inside the House chamber, are slowing a full legislative schedule.It’s also giving power to disrupters like Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-Ga.),who’s used a procedural move to further drag out the process.
Votes can take more than three times longer than pre-pandemic times.
What they’re saying: Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-Md.) and Minority Whip Steve Scalise (R-La.) had a lively debate on the House floor Thursday about reopening.”Now that we have seen from reports … that roughly 75% of all members in this House have had a vaccination for COVID-19, there’s a strong desire to get back to a regular floor schedule,” said Scalise.
“It would be a lot simpler if every member had been vaccinated,” Hoyer replied.
Stupid or evil? Why choose!