Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (R) on Monday signed landmark legislation banning the use of vaccine passports in the Sunshine State via Senate Bill (SB) 2006, which effectively serves as a safeguard against overreach from the state or local government.
State Rep. Tom Leek (R) described the bill as striking an “appropriate balance between protecting one’s safety and one’s personal liberty” — a balance the Republican governor has used as his primary guide throughout the pandemic despite criticisms from the establishment media and partisan political pundits.
DeSantis said during an event in St. Petersburg on Monday:
I think it’s the evidence-based thing to do. I think folks that are saying that they need to be policing people at this point, if you’re saying that you really are saying you don’t believe in the vaccines, you don’t believe in the data you don’t believe in the science.
SB 2006 effectively serves as a safeguard from government overreach, empowering the legislature to override restrictive emergency edicts from the office of the governor, no matter whom that individual may be.
“I think the Legislature looked and said, ‘Well, okay, what if we were in a California situation?’”the governor said. “What would the Legislature’s ability to be? And so they put safeguards for the people of Florida.’’
Per the bill, it is the “intent of the Legislature to minimize the negative effects of an extended emergency, such as a pandemic or another public health emergency.” It limits local emergency orders to seven days, allowing them to be extended once a week for 42 days. However, the governor can override the local emergency orders.
Local orders must be “limited in duration, applicability, and scope in order to reduce any infringement on individual rights or liberties to the greatest extent possible,” per the bill.
Additionally, the measure bans localities and businesses from forcing people to provide proof of receiving a vaccine for the Chinese coronavirus.