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Republican Mississippi Gov. Tate Reeves joined other conservative voices opposing a so-called “vaccine passport,” a proposed identification for a person to verify if they have received a COVID-19 Vaccine.

“I don’t think it’s necessary, and I don’t think it’s a good thing to do in America,” Reeves said in an interview with CNN on Sunday.

A vaccine passport acts like a regular passport whereby people can attest to their vaccination status to travel or enter businesses as society begins to open back up.

Reeves; comments come after other Republican governors have pushed back against the idea of a vaccine passport. Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis issued an executive order last Friday banning local and state government agencies and businesses from requiring people to show their vaccination status.

DeSantis said such measures would “reduce individual freedom” and “create two classes of citizens based on vaccination,” according to The New York Times.

So far in the U.S., only one state has implemented anything resembling a vaccine passport, that being New York which has a limited government partnership with a private company in the state, according to the Associated Press.

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Cruise line requiring vaccination proof dares Florida’s DeSantis to enforce his vaccine passport ban

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Celebrity Cruises is waving off threats by Florida GOP Gov. Ron DeSantis to enforce Florida’s ban on vaccine passports.

A spokesperson for the Royal Caribbean subsidiary told USA Today it will press forward with plans to require proof of vaccination before embarking on its Centers for Disease Control and Prevention-approved maiden voyage June 26 from Fort Lauderdale and its subsequent sailings from Florida through the fall.

It’s the first cruise line to earn the federal agency’s approval under strict new COVID-19 requirements for cruises with paying passengers – requiring 95 percent of crew and passengers to be “fully vaccinated.”

That requirement violates “the spirit” of the governor’s emergency order protecting “the right to medical privacy” for Floridians, a DeSantis spokesperson said. A bill signed into law by DeSantis, taking effect July 1, also bans vaccine passports.

The governor on Friday singled out Florida cruise lines in remarks carried by WPLG Local 10.

“We are going to enforce Florida law,” he said during a stop in Lakeland. “You don’t pass laws and then not enforce them against giant corporations. It doesn’t work that way.”

DeSantis said the CDC doesn’t have the authority to shut down cruise lines for failure to comply with its COVID-19 guidance. Cruise ship attorney Jim Walker told USA Today that Celebrity would have to take DeSantis to court to clarify whose authority prevails on proof of vaccination.

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Attempt to ban vaccine passports in Arizona fails

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A legislative effort to ban vaccine passports and punish businesses that require proof of COVID-19 inoculations narrowly failed in Arizona.

The Senate called House Bill 2190 for a vote Thursday, even though a couple of Republicans were missing from what was expected to be a party-line vote.

Should it have succeeded, the measure would have banned government entities, businesses, ticket venues and others from either discriminating against unvaccinated people or offering special benefits to those based on vaccination status.

Individuals breaking the law faced felony charges. Businesses that defied the law would have seen any state-issued business licenses suspended.

The bill exempted much of the health care industry from the requirements.

Gov. Doug Ducey banned public entities from requiring any proof of vaccination via an executive order he signed in April.

With a couple of absent Republicans, the party needed every member of their caucus to support the bill.

Sen. T.J. Shope, R-Coolidge, was the only Republican to vote against the measure. The former House speaker owns a supermarket, something he said guided his decision.

“I believe in private property rights and the rights of the sole proprietor,” Shope said, giving the hypothetical of an immunocompromised barber who can’t get a vaccine. “This bill in its current form would have the heavy hand of government shut that business down and leave that individual without a livelihood, and that is something that I cannot stand for.”

Sen. David Gowan, R-Sierra Vista, responded, saying the bill takes the appropriate stance on the rights of Arizonans.

“We all believe in private property rights, but we also believe in individual rights,” he said. “Any time that you have to go into a business and they can say, ‘Let me see your passport. Show me what you’ve done. Show me you’ve injected something in your arm.’ That is not proper. That is not individual rights.”

Sponsors of the bill may call it for reconsideration before the current session ends.

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