COLUMBUS (WCMH) — As a pair of conservative Ohio politicians are calling for the state to enact a ban on vaccine passports, its neighbor to the west has passed legislation to do just that.
Lawmakers in Indiana passed a bill Thursday that would prohibit the state from requiring people to take the COVID-19 vaccine or from issuing a document saying a person has been vaccinated.
In recent days, U.S. Rep. Jim Jordan and former state treasurer Josh Mandel, who is running for a U.S. Senate seat in 2022, both called for such a ban in Ohio.
Opponents noted that the Indiana bill would not change anything from current policy. Indiana does not mandate the COVID-19 vaccines, and because of how the bill was written, it would apply only to COVID-19 and not any other vaccine.
But those in favor say the bill offers an extra layer of protection against government interference.
“The thought of a state mandating that people take a vaccine that’s still experimental, according to the manufacturers of the vaccine, would be considered a gross violation of the individual freedom of Hoosiers,” Republican Rep. John Jacob told Fox 59 of Indianapolis.
However, the bill would not stop businesses from requiring proof of vaccination.
In Ohio, Rep. Al Cutrona (R-Canfield) said a few weeks ago that he would introduce a bill to ban vaccine passports, but the legislation has yet to be introduced. A similar vaccine choice measure, introduced by Rep. Jennifer Gross (R-West Chester), that would allow individuals to refuse any vaccine without fear of penalty, has been assigned to committee.