(The Center Square) – Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis and U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio are pushing back against a Biden administration plan to give the World Health Organization authority to dictate global lockdowns and mandates, superseding U.S. and state laws.
According to an amendment to a treaty likely to be approved this week by representatives of 194 countries, sovereign nations would be required to fund and participate in a global surveillance program, including implementing digital vaccine passports required for travel.
“We in Florida, there is no way we will ever support this W-H-O thing … that’s not going to happen,” DeSantis said “No way.”
At a news conference in Cape Coral Monday, DeSantis touted Florida’s economic successes, emboldened by its anti-lockdown policies. “When some of the nurses were being threatened with losing their job over the mandates, we called a special legislative session … to protect their jobs because people should not have to choose between getting the COVID jab and putting food on the table,” he said.
By contrast in other states, he said, “… you saw a lot of these elites advocate very pernicious policies. Part of the reason people want to move here is because we rejected those policies. But they advocated very pernicious policies, including locking kids out of school and now even Harvard is doing studies showing Florida there was no increase in the achievement gap between rich, poor, black, white. The lockdown states that kept the kids out of school you’ve seen a big increase in the achievement gap. That’s going to linger for years and years.”
Florida continues to outperform the U.S. economy. Unlike many states reporting surpluses due to an infusion of federal stimulus dollars, Florida’s reporting a $20 billion surplus this fiscal year that includes no federal dollars.
“By keeping the economy open, maintaining a low tax environment, and being fiscally responsible, Florida’s FY 21-22 surplus is the largest in state history – with more than $20 billion in reserves for a budget that is just a shade over $100 billion,” DeSantis said when announcing job growth data.
Florida’s tourism industry is also breaking records.
“Economists originally projected that Florida tourism wouldn’t fully recover until 2024, but quarter after quarter, despite the Biden administration’s utter failure to manage inflation and the nation’s supply chain woes, Florida’s visitation numbers continue to break records and defy conventional wisdom,” DeSantis also said when announcing the state’s tourism data. “Florida’s tourism industry begins 2022 with incredible strength, proving that freedom first policies will always win, especially when combating the inept economic policies coming out of D.C.”
Florida’s senior U.S. senator, Marco Rubio, said over the weekend, “We must never allow Biden to use a ‘Pandemic Treaty’ to give control over American public health decisions to the corrupt WHO.”
One part of the plan includes a global vaccine passport system developed by T-Systems, a subsidiary of German-based Telekom. The goal is to facilitate “194 member states to introduce digital vaccination certificates.”
Garrett Mehl with the WHO’s Department of Digital Health and Innovation said in a statement, “Vaccination certificates that are tamper-proof and digitally verifiable build trust. WHO is therefore supporting member states in building national and regional trust networks and verification technology. The WHO’s gateway service also serves as a bridge between regional systems. It can also be used as part of future vaccination campaigns and home-based records.”
The German company already developed digital vaccination certificates used in the EU by more than 60 countries, Telekom reports.