Christy Smith

Washington, D.C.- Representatives Mike Garcia (R-CA), Elise Stefanik (R-NY), and Ashley Hinson (R-IA) introduced a resolution to oppose the Department of Defense (DoD)’s original plan to deliver COVID-19 vaccines to prisoners held at Guantanamo Bay ahead of hardworking Americans. This resolution was introduced after reports came out that alleged 9/11 mastermind Khalid Sheikh Mohammed along with other Guantanamo Bay detainees will be getting the COVID-19 vaccine before many Americans. While DoD has now backtracked on the original plan, the resolution condemns the first plan and will assert the federal government to provide COVID-19 vaccinations to U.S. citizens before the prisoners at Guantanamo Bay. The resolution is supported by 36 additional Members of Congress.

“The original reports that DoD was planning to provide the COVID-19 vaccine to alleged terrorists before Americans were extremely alarming,” said Garcia. “ I am glad they have now backtracked on their original plan but am still concerned that the Biden Administration ever considered  such a scheme in the first place. It is an insult to hardworking Americans who have already been harmed by government-mandated lockdowns. Ensuring Americans have access to the COVID-19 vaccine plays a critical role in our country being able to safely open up again. The Biden Administration must start putting Americans first.”

In an effort to improve vaccine distribution in California and nationwide, Garcia recently introduced the Vaccinate More Americans Act. His bill would allow vaccine providers to administer leftover COVID-19 vaccines to individuals eligible to receive the vaccine in the following phased allocation group, instead of letting the doses go to waste. It would also allow for vaccine providers to disregard any existing state or local law that prohibits them from administering leftover vaccines to individuals who are not in the current phased allocation group.  Learn more about the bill here.