WASHINGTON, D.C. (WHNT) — 16 Republican governors, including Alabama’s own Governor Kay Ivey, penned a letter to President Biden asking for the end to the nation’s COVID-19 vaccine mandate on international travel.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), non-U.S. citizens flying into the United States are required to show proof of COVID-19 vaccination before hopping on a flight.
The joint letter signed by those 16 governors and addressed to the president stated revoking that rule would “allow our country to return to normal.”
“The lifting of mask mandates and testing requirements for air travel were steps in the right direction,” the letter asserted. “Now, you should end the requirement that all non-U.S. citizen travelers entering the United States be fully vaccinated against COVID-19.”
Alabama Governor Kay Ivey was among the signatories to that letter.
“Yet again, I’m proud to stand with my fellow Republican governors in advocating for common sense,” Ivey said in a statement. “The bottom line is that the current international travel restrictions are hurting America’s economy, which as of last week, is officially in recession.”
Alabama was among the many states to implement mask mandates and stay-at-home orders during the heights of the COVID-19 pandemic. That initial public health order began in March 2020 and lasted until May 31, 2021.
As of August 10, 2022, the State of Alabama has recorded just under 1.5 million cases of COVID-19. Almost 20,000 people in the state have died as a result of the virus, 3,224 of those in 2022 alone.
“This issue has negatively impacted American business and our supply chain, and it is past time we ease the burden for travelers visiting our country for work or leisure,” Ivey continued.
Other governors who signed the joint letter include Kristi Noem (R-S.D.), Mike Dunleavy (R-Alaska), Asa Hutchinson (R-Ark.), Brian Kemp (R-Ga.), Brad Little (R-Idaho), Kim Reynolds (R-Iowa), Tate Reeves (R-Miss.), Mike Parson (R-Mo.), Greg Gianforte (R-Mt.), Chris Sununu (R-N.H.), Doug Burgum (R-N.D.), Kevin Stitt (R-Okla.), Henry McMaster (R-S.C.), Bill Lee (R-Tenn.), Glenn Youngkin (R-Va.), and Mark Gordon (R-Wyo.).
“The rest of the world is moving on from the COVID-19 pandemic and returning to normal. It is time for your administration to do the same,” the letter concluded.
Read the full letter here.