Newt Gingrich Commentary: COVID-19 Totalitarianism on the March

sign that says "NO FORCED VACCINE"

It is hard to know which is more frightening: the Australian radicalism about COVID-19, the Austrian effort to coerce its citizens, or the attitudes of American Democrats who regard extreme sanctions as reasonable behavior toward the supposedly bad people who don’t get vaccinated or wear masks.

Let’s consider each one.

In Australia, the government felt so threatened by the best tennis player in the world that it intervened decisively to block him from entering the country and competing in the Australian Open.

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Metro Nashville Expands COVID-19 Testing Hours

Metro Nashville is expanding COVID-19 testing hours, offering testing on the weekends for the month of January, starting Saturday.

Testing demand has been high. On Monday, nearly 1,300 individuals were tested at the Metro testing centers close to 1,600 were tested on Tuesday. That is only the number of people tested at Metro testing sites. It does not include people who get tested at other sites, like pharmacies, doctor’s offices, at home, or other places.

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Supreme Court Set to Convene Special Session on Vaccine Mandates

On Wednesday, the Supreme Court announced that it will hold a special session in roughly two weeks to hear oral arguments regarding the Biden Administration’s ongoing efforts to force vaccinations on private employees, federal contractors, and healthcare workers, according to Politico.

The special session will begin on January 7th, 2022, just several days ahead of the regularly-scheduled session set to begin on January 10th.

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Democrats Urge Health Officials to Require Vaccination or Negative Test for Domestic Flights

A group of Democratic lawmakers sent letters to the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) on Monday asking officials to require proof of vaccination or a negative COVID-19 test to fly domestically.

The letters, sent to FAA Administrator Steve Dickson and CDC Director Rochelle Walensky, were signed by Sen. Dianne Feinstein of California, along with Reps. Eric Swalwell of California, Donald Beyer of Virginia and Ritchie Torres of New York. The lawmakers cited the recent emergence of the Omicron variant of the coronavirus as justification for the request.

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Ohio National Guard Called to Help With Hospital Staffing Shortages

More than 1,000 Ohio National Guard members began working in hospitals across the state Monday to help combat what Gov. Mike DeWine called a growing strain caused by the rising number of COVID-19 hospitalizations.

The Ohio Department of Health also has begun working with a staffing company to bring more nurses and other providers from out of state to help ease pressure on current hospital staffs as the number of patients hospitalized with COVID-19 has reached its highest level of the year.

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Customs and Border Protection Vaccination Rate Increased After Mandate Deadline

The number of U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) employees that are fully vaccinated against COVID-19 rose to 17,192 after the federal mandate deadline, according to a document obtained by the Daily Caller News Foundation.

The DCNF earlier reported that as of Nov. 14, 16,500 border agents were fully vaccinated, and 4,165 border agents were unvaccinated. The federal mandate deadline was Nov. 22.

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Report: At Least Two Students at Barack Obama Global Prep Academy in Los Angeles Given COVID Jabs Without Their Parents’ Consent

At least two parents have accused a prep school in South Los Angeles of vaccinating their children without their permission after bribing them with pizza, according to NBC Los Angeles. One distressed mother claimed that her 13-year-old son was told not to tell his parents after he was given a Pfizer COVID-19 injection at Barack Obama Global Prep Academy.

Maribel Duarte told NBC LA on Monday that her son recently came home from school with a vaccine card after he had accepted the jab. The boy told his mom that he agreed to get the shot after he was offered pizza. Duarte said that the woman who administered the shot and signed the form told her son not to tell his parents because she didn’t want to get in trouble.

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Rep. Eric Swalwell Calls Parent Protestors ‘Looney Carnival Barkers’

Eric Swalwell

A California congressman is facing backlash for a series of tweets slamming unvaccinated Americans and parents who choose not to vaccinate their children.

“I’m losing my Covid patience [thread]. I’ve tried to reason with the unvaxxed. I’ve directed some to medical pros. I don’t judge but hear them out and steer them to facts. The unvaxxed love to say it’s about choice. But you know who doesn’t have a choice? My 3 kids under 5,” Rep. Eric Swalwell (D-CA-15)  said on Twitter. 

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Commentary: False Incentives for Vaccination

Last week, New York Governor Kathy Hochul launched a new program: an incentive to get children ages 5 through 11 to take COVID shots, now that they are available. The program in question has that usual bureaucratic and humorless advertising campaign: “Vaccinate, Educate, Graduate.”

According to the New York State website, “Parents and guardians of children ages 5 through 11 who receive their first vaccine dose by December 19th can enter the State’s incentive program for a chance for their child to win a full scholarship to any two- or four-year SUNY or CUNY college or university; the scholarship includes tuition, room, and board. Ten winners will be announced each week beginning November 24th, with a total of 50 winners being selected over the five-week period.”

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Cargo Companies Warn That Vaccine Mandates Could Worsen Supply Chain Crisis

Several cargo boxes on a ship in the ocean

A trade association representing all of the major cargo companies in the United States is warning that if Joe Biden actively purses more vaccine mandates, it could further disrupt an already-weakened supply chain, according to Politico.

Stephen Alterman, president of the Cargo Airline Association (CAA) sent a letter to the Biden Administration expressing concern over an upcoming December 8th deadline.

“We have significant concerns with the employer mandates announced on September 9th, 2021,” Alterman said, “and the ability of industry members to implement the required employee vaccinations by December 8th, 2021.”

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Crom’s Commentary on Joe Biden’s Governmental Power Grab and American’s Unwilling to Bend the Knee

Monday morning on the Tennessee Star Report, host Michael Patrick Leahy welcomed Crom Carmichel in studio for a special edition of Crom’s Commentary and how American’s are not ready to bend the knee in the era of COVID.

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REPORT: Training Urged New Jersey Teachers to Track Conversations with Parents, Students Regarding the COVID-19 Vaccine

Group of adults sitting at a conference room table

New Jersey teachers said they were instructed during a teachers union training to log conversations regarding the COVID-19 vaccine with parents and students, Fox News reported.

The training provided by Made to Save, a vaccine “equity” nonprofit, the National Education Association (NEA) and the American Federation of Teachers (AFT) directed instructors to “follow up and track” conversations with parents and teachers regarding the COVID-19 vaccine, Fox News reported. They were told to log their conversations into the Democrat campaign app, “Reach,” and were incentivized with gift cards to be active users.

Campaign operative Jake DeGroot devised Reach, which New York Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez utilized in her 2018 campaign, Fox News reported.

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Commentary: Joe Biden’s Poor Leadership During the COVID Era

“Get vaccinated,” whispered the doddering, white-haired failure of a president before beating a hasty retreat from the podium. Reporters barked questions at him which neither he nor his handlers had interest in answering, because they have no answers.

Joe Biden has no answers for COVID-19. What Joe Biden has is blame and Otherization for Americans not invested in the tired narratives of his handlers and the managerial elite he represents so badly.

That’s clear. It’s the only true takeaway from the disgraceful, alarming speech Biden gave Thursday.

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Afghan Refugees Undergo ‘Biometric and Biographic Vetting’ Before Coming to America

Joe Biden

Afghan refugees are subject to security and health screening performed by Department of Homeland Security officials before they’re evacuated to the U.S. or a third country for additional processing, a Biden administration senior official said.

Afghans must clear biometric and biographic vetting including iris scans, palm and voice prints and photographs before they’re evacuated from the country, CNN reported. The refugees are also tested for COVID-19 and offered vaccinations before they’re released, the senior official said in a background press call on Aug. 24.

“That [security screening] process involves biometric and biographic security screenings conducted by our intelligence, law enforcement, and counterterrorism professionals who are working quite literally around the clock to vet all of these Afghans before they’re allowed into the United States,” the Biden administration senior official said on the call.

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‘Require It’: Biden Tells Private Companies to Mandate COVID-19 Vaccinations

Man getting COVID vaccine

President Joe Biden encouraged private sector companies Monday to “step up” vaccine requirements for employees following the Food and Drug Administration’s approval of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine.

“If you’re a business leader, a non-profit leader, a state or local leader, who has been waiting for full FDA approval to require vaccinations, I call on you now to do that. Require it,” Biden said. “Do what I did last month. Require your employees to get vaccinated or face strict requirements.”

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State Senator from Wisconsin: Governor Evers Has Failed to Raise Refugee Concerns

The Wisconsin state senator who represents the towns around Fort McCoy has issued the strongest objection yet to the still murky plan to bring thousands of Afghan refugees to central Wisconsin.

Sen. Patrick Testin, R-Stevens Point, on Friday sent a strongly worded letter to Gov. Evers asking for answers about who the refugees are and where they will go once they arrive.

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California Refugee Craig Huey Weighs in on Williamson County Parent Leanne Baker’s Plea to School Board and Americans’ Rights

Thursday morning on the Tennessee Star Report, host Michael Patrick Leahy welcomed California refugee Craig Huey in studio to weigh in on Tuesday nights Williams County meeting where parent Leanne Baker made clear her rights as an American against mandated vaccinations and masks for her children.

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Federal Bill Would Ban Vaccine Database in Response to Biden’s ‘Door-to-Door’ Pledge

Ted Cruz

U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, introduced a bill that would prohibit the federal government from creating and maintaining a federal database of every American who has received COVID-19 vaccines.

Cruz introduced the bill after White House officials announced a plan to use taxpayer dollars to pay individuals to go door-to-door in regions of the country where there are relatively low vaccination rates.

In response to statements made by President Joe Biden and White House press secretary Jen Psaki about the door-to-door outreach initiative, Cruz tweeted, “When the Biden admin calls for ‘targeted’ ‘door-to-door outreach’ to get people vaccinated, it comes across as a g-man saying: ‘We know you’re unvaccinated, let’s talk, comrade.’ My bill to ban federal vaccine passports prohibits the feds from maintaining a vaccine database.”

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Study: Ohio COVID-19 Vaccine Lottery Failed to Increase Rates

Giving away millions of federal tax dollars and hundreds of thousands of dollars in college scholarships did nothing to improve Ohio’s COVID-19 vaccination rate, a recent study concluded.

Those results have Democratic leaders saying the state needs to do more to address vaccine hesitancy and deal with what they call root causes of Ohio’s stagnant vaccination rate.

The study, conducted by the Boston University School of Medicine using information from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, concluded reports that the state’s Vax-a-Million lottery program increased rates failed to factor in vaccinations expanded to ages 12-15.

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Rare Heart Inflammation Following COVID-19 Vaccination Sparks Emergency CDC Meeting

Doctors working on patient

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention will discuss reports of a rare heart inflammation following doses of mRNA-based COVID-19 vaccines in an emergency meeting, it announced Thursday.

The emergency meeting, set to take place on June 18, will include updates on mRNA COVID-19 vaccine safety with a specific focus on rare reports of myocarditis and pericarditis, Scott Pauley of the CDC told The Daily Caller News Foundation. The risks and benefits of administering the mRNA COVID-19 vaccines to adolescents and young adults will also be discussed, according to the meeting’s agenda.

The announcement comes following a presentation to the Food and Drug Administration by Dr. Tom Shimabukuro, deputy director of the CDC’s Immunization Safety Office, confirming 226 cases of myocarditis/pericarditis in people under 30. These cases are more than twice what was expected under the FDA’s safety assessment for COVID-19 vaccines.

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St. Cloud Bishop Requires Vaccine for Those Participating in Church Camps, Programs

Bishop Donald J. Kettler

A St. Cloud Catholic bishop is requiring participants, including children, who attend church camps to be fully vaccinated.

Bishop Donald Kettler of the Diocese of St. Cloud sent a letter to pastors last week outlining his requirements for day camps, overnight gatherings, and similar events.

The bishop is requiring all “staff, volunteers, and participants attending these programs to be fully vaccinated as a condition of participation.” Proof of vaccination will also be required.

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Gov. Kemp Bans Vaccine Passports in Georgia

Passport

Georgia Governor Brian Kemp signed an executive order on Tuesday banning the use of vaccine passports throughout the state. 

The order explicitly states that no state agency, provider of state services, or state property is allowed to implement any vaccine passport program or require proof of vaccination in order to enter the premises of a location or conduct business. Additionally, vaccination will not be required to enter the state of Georgia.

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‘Too Risky’: Progressives Are Upset CDC Lifted Mask Mandate

mask in persons hand

Progressives voiced their dismay following the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention updated guidance that vaccinated people no longer need to wear masks indoors or outdoors.

Progressives and medical experts immediately criticized the new Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) mask guidelines, arguing that the alteration was extreme and would be harmful to certain parts of the population. Others said the new guidance is confusing and disincentivizes people to get vaccinated.

“The CDC has done an about-face that’s shockingly abrupt: it’s confusing & could actually disincentivize vaccines,” Dr. Leana Wen, a George Washington University public health professor, tweeted after the announcement Thursday.

“Yes, vaccinated people are well-protected and not a threat to others,” she said in a later tweet. “But do we trust that the honor system—won’t unvaccinated people pretend to be vaccinated & stop wearing masks?”

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Over 100 American Colleges Demand Students Get Vaccinated

COVID Vaccine Parking sign

As American schools begin the process of slowly reopening at all academic levels, over 100 colleges and universities are implementing the strictest requirements by demanding that all students receive a coronavirus vaccine before returning to school, according to CNN.

In the beginning of April, only about 14 campuses had announced such a policy. But by the end of the month, that number had increased exponentially. Only a handful of the schools have included possible exemptions for various medical, religious, or personal reasons. The majority of schools demanding such mandatory vaccinations are private schools.

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Illegal Immigrants Repeatedly Denied COVID-19 Vaccine in Florida: Report

COVID Vaccine

Undocumented immigrants in Florida have been routinely denied access to the COVID-19 vaccine, the Miami Herald reported Thursday.

A valid Florida driver’s license or government-issued I.D., utility bill or rental agreement is required to receive the vaccine, the Herald reported. Other undocumented immigrants who worked as essential workers across the U.S. haven’t been able to receive the vaccine, though some local governments are advocating for other proofs of residency so they will have access.

“What we feel is that they don’t want immigrants vaccinated,” Doris Mejia, an undocumented immigrant living in Florida told the Herald. “They see us as less, yet we work the most.”

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Commentary: Just Say No to Vaccine Passports

We all desperately want normal lives again. And I’m not talking about the finnicky “new normal” that accommodates Aunt Karen’s irrational fear of leaving her house. I’m talking about “normal normal,” where people crowd into concert halls with standing room only, restaurants operate crowded tables at 120 percent capacity, and cruise ship buffets shove food and alcohol down my throat like it’s Fat Tuesday, all day, every day. Ah … don’t you miss 2019? I sure do.

It was only a matter of time before some in our society turned the national COVID experiment into an excuse to say, “Papers, please.” That’s right — the so-called vaccine passport is now emerging in the United States. It’s an app that is advertised as a way to help people do the things they miss doing from pre-pandemic times. Want to feel completely safe in your favorite store, and surround yourself with others who, like you, have rolled up their sleeve and gotten the vaccine? There’s an app for that. Just scan your QR code and enter feeling sanctimoniously sanitized.

Last week, New York became the first state to offer such a vaccine verification app. The state-sanctioned app, called Excelsior Pass, claims to let participants “Attend sporting events, arts performances and more! Excelsior Pass supports a safe reopening of New York by providing a free, fast and secure way to present digital proof of COVID-19 vaccination or negative test results.” Well that sounds fun to me! Sign me up!

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Factory Mixup Ruins 15 Million Johnson & Johnson Coronavirus Vaccines

COVID-19 Vaccinations

Workers at a Baltimore plant responsible for producing two separate coronavirus vaccines mistakenly mixed up their respective ingredients, ruining approximately 15 million doses of Johnson & Johnson’s vaccine and pausing all production at the plant, the company confirmed Wednesday.

The facility, run by Emergent BioSolutions, had partnered with both Johnson & Johnson and AstraZeneca to produce vaccines. Federal officials said that the mistake was a result of human error, according to The New York Times, which first reported the mix up that reportedly occurred several weeks ago.

A quality control review “identified one batch of drug substance that did not meet quality standards at Emergent BioSolutions, a site not yet authorized to manufacture drug substance for our COVID-19 vaccine,” Johnson & Johnson said in a statement. “This batch was never advanced to the filling and finishing stages of our manufacturing process.”

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Americans Are Starting to Reemerge from Their ‘COVID Bunkers’ as Vaccinations Accelerate

As coronavirus vaccinations accelerate across the country, more and more Americans are seeing their friends in public, eating at restaurants and shopping in retail stores, according to a Tuesday Axios/Ipsos poll.

Almost 50% of Americans said that they had visited family or friends in the past month, according to the poll, up from just 39% in February. And 45% said that they had gone out to eat, up 12 points from the past month as well.

Additionally, 90% of respondents said they knew someone who had already been vaccinated, and 36% said that they had been vaccinated themselves.

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‘Americans Must Be Prepared for What Is Coming’: Pro-Life Lawmakers, Activists Condemn Becerra’s Confirmation to Health and Human Services

Pro-life lawmakers and activists condemned news Thursday that the senate confirmed California Attorney General Xavier Becerra to serve as health and human services secretary, warning that Becerra is both “a culture warrior” and an “extreme left-wing ideologue.”

“Becerra is a culture warrior who made his name in bloody-knuckled politics by bullying nuns,” Republican Nebraska Sen. Ben Sasse said Thursday, referring to Becerra’s battles with the Little Sisters of the Poor over an Obama-era contraception mandate.

The Nebraska senator added that Health and Human Services (HHS) should be focused on health during the pandemic — not Becerra’s progressive priorities.

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Fauci Warns States to Keep Restrictions or Independence Day Could Be Cancelled

On Sunday, Dr. Anthony Fauci warned that the Biden Administration’s prediction that coronavirus vaccines can lead to relative normalcy by July Fourth is “quite reasonable” —assuming states don’t pull back public safety measures, Politico reported.

“If you wait just a bit longer to give the vaccine program the chance to increase the protection in the community, then it makes pulling back much less risky,” said Fauci, on “Fox News Sunday.” “But if you do it prematurely there really is a danger of triggering another surge.”

But Fauci expressed concerns the pandemic is still a danger in the United States, with the number of new cases seeming to plateau at 50,000 or 60,000 daily over the last week.

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FEMA to Run Mass COVID Vaccination Clinic in Cleveland

The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) is set to dole out thousands of doses of the COVID-19 vaccine in Cleveland, according to Friday reports.

“A mass coronavirus vaccination center will open on March 17 at Cleveland State University’s Wolstein Center, with the capability to vaccinate 6,000 people a day,” Cleveland.com reported. 

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Johnson and Johnson Ships 4 Million Vaccine Doses, Shots Expected Within 48 Hours

Johnson & Johnson’s coronavirus vaccine began distribution across the country Monday, and the company’s CEO said shots could begin within 48 hours.

“We’re shipping 4 million [doses] literally as we speak,” Johnson & Johnson CEO Alex Gorsky told NBC News Monday morning. “Within the next 24 to 48 hours, Americans should start receiving shots in arms.”

Gorsky added that the company was on track to distribute 100 million shots by the end of June and 1 billion by the end of 2021. Johnson & Johnson’s vaccine was recommended by the FDA’s vaccine advisory panel on Friday and officially approved one day later.

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Vaccinations Slow After Storms Delay Shipments of 6 Million COVID-19 Doses

The extreme cold weather across much of the country has delayed 6 million COVID-19 vaccine doses, slowing a vaccination rate that has been steadily rising since the Biden administration took office last month.

The backlogged doses account for roughly three days’ of delayed shipments affecting all 50 states, due to road closures, snowed-in workers and power outages, said Andy Slavitt, senior adviser on the White House’s COVID-19 response, during a news conference Friday.

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Minneapolis Lifts Bar Seating Ban, Still Requires Multiple Distancing Rules

Residents of Minneapolis received a small reprieve from stringent COVID-19 restrictions Friday, but plenty of rules still remain in place. 

“The city of Minneapolis has lifted its ban on bar counter seating just in time for the weekend,” Minnesota Public Radio News (MPR) reported. “Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey said the decision was based on public health data, showing a decrease in COVID-19 cases in the city.”

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Virginia COVID Vaccine Registration Site Launched, Immediately Crashes

A website launched by the Virginia Department of Health (VDH) Tuesday allowing residents to register online to receive the COVID-19 vaccine immediately crashed due to high volume.

“The website was crashing early Tuesday morning, but was still working for some people,” WAVY reported. “As of 10:30 a.m., the issues appeared to have mostly subsided.”

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Report: Vaccination Company’s Poor Safety Protocols Cause Infections Across Ohio, Kentucky, and Indiana

The Kentucky Department for Public Health has announced that Location Vaccination, a company that provides vaccinations for businesses, is currently being investigated for causing an untold number of infections across Ohio, Kentucky, and Indiana. According to the Department of Public Health (DPH) Report, there is no issue with the actual…

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