WASHINGTON, D.C. (LifeSiteNews) — U.S. Republican Sen. J.D. Vance of Ohio announced Wednesday that he would force a vote on the Senate floor of his new legislation to ban the re-implementation of mask mandates on public transportation and in schools.
In a Wednesday press release, Vance’s office stated that the senator intends to force a vote Thursday on his “Freedom to Breathe Act,” which would bar the Biden administration from imposing any new “federal mask mandates for domestic air travel, public transit systems, and primary, secondary, and post-secondary schools.”
No more mask mandates for school kids or airline passengers. This week I’ll force a vote on my legislation to ban federal mask mandates. pic.twitter.com/HT5Fg7yai7
— J.D. Vance (@JDVance1) September 6, 2023
The Catholic senator introduced the legislation on Tuesday, calling on Congress to prevent the mandates from returning at least until December 31, 2024. The law would not forbid the reimposition of mask mandates in hospitals or nursing homes.
Speaking to Fox News Digital on Tuesday, Vance pointed out that Americans have already “tried mask mandates,” which have “failed to control the spread of respiratory viruses, violated basic bodily freedom, and set our fellow citizens against one another.”
“This legislation will ensure that no federal bureaucracy, no commercial airline, and no public school can impose the misguided policies of the past,” he said.
In a statement, Vance said that “[m]ultiple entities within our government, within the public health bureaucracy, there are local schools in the D.C. area now reimposing mask mandates, this is coming back unless we stop it from happening.”
“If they say the mask mandates are not coming back, then come to the Senate floor, vote with us, and say ‘no more mask mandates,’” the Ohio senator added. “Let’s make it bipartisan.”
Vance’s comments come after former U.S. President Donald Trump — who oversaw the initial COVID-19 response and has continued to take credit for the rapid rollout of experimental COVID shots — called on Americans to “not comply” with any new COVID-19 lockdowns or mandates.
In the video late last month, Trump called out the “left-wing lunatics” who want “to take away our freedom.” “[T]o every COVID tyrant who wants to take away our freedom, hear these words: We will not comply, so don’t even think about it.”
“We will not shut down our schools. We will not accept your lockdowns,” he continued. “We will not abide by your mask mandates, and we will not tolerate your vaccine mandates.”
Speaking to Fox News on Tuesday, Vance called Trump’s message “very sensible.”
“Democrats howled in protest, and said, ‘nobody’s trying to bring back mask mandates.’ And yet, this week, we see multiple instances confirming Trump’s thesis,” he said.
Vance’s comment drew the praise of Trump’s eldest son, Donald Trump Jr., who posted on Twitter/X that it was “great to see [Vance] going on offense to immediately turn” his father’s defiant opposition to mandates “into legislation and force a vote on it.”
“Every Republican who is serious about defeating the left should be publicly supporting JD’s bill to stop mandates from returning,” Trump Jr. said.