Gov. Kay Ivey joined 16 other Republican governors on Wednesday in a letter urging President Biden to lift the Covid-19 vaccine mandate on international travel to the United States.
“Yet again, I’m proud to stand with my fellow Republican governors in advocating for common sense,” Ivey said. “The bottom line is that the current international travel restrictions are hurting America’s economy, which as of last week, is officially in recession. 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. I, like many of my fellow Alabamians and Americans ask the question: Why is this Administration OK with letting folks flood through the gates at our Southern Border unaccounted for while we make it harder for the ones doing things the right way or simply just visiting?”
In the letter, the governors argue that the U.S. is not aligning with how other countries are handling Covid policy.
“Over the last several months, countries around the world dropped mandatory vaccine requirements for visitors from Australia to Israel to almost every country in Europe,” the letter states. “In total, as of July 2022, 72 countries dropped all COVID-19 testing and vaccination
requirements for travelers.”
The governors say this puts America at a competitive disadvantage for attracting international travelers.
The letter comes at a time when the U.S. facing possibly the most virulent strain of Covid-19 yet, although this strain is putting less strain on hospitals thanks in part to increased vaccination rates preventing severe illness and the virus itself being less impactful.
Alabama is among the states with the highest spread of Covid-19 at this time.