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Biden's COVID-19 vaccine mandate for 100 million Americans doesn't apply to illegal immigrants

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President Joe Biden announced on Thursday a sweeping COVID-19 vaccination mandate for roughly 100 million Americans, but did not institute mandatory vaccinations for illegal immigrants.

"We've been patient. But our patience is wearing thin, and your refusal has cost all of us," Biden declared, placing blame on the 80 million Americans who have not been vaccinated.

"Nearly three-quarters of the eligible have gotten at least one shot, but one quarter has not gotten any," Biden continued to scold those who are not fully vaccinated. "That's nearly 80 million Americans not vaccinated. And in a country as large as ours, that's 25% minority. That 25% can cause a lot of damage — and they are."

Biden again attacked vaccine-hesitant Americans, "The unvaccinated overcrowd our hospitals, are overrunning the emergency rooms and intensive care units, leaving no room for someone with a heart attack, or pancreatitis, or cancer."

Biden reprimanded unvaccinated Americans, who are "supported by a distinct minority of elected officials," and accused them of "keeping us from turning the corner."

Biden's six-point "Path Out of the Pandemic" plan will force U.S. employers with more than 100 employees to require their workers to get the COVID-19 vaccination or mandate weekly testing for coronavirus. Businesses that fail to follow through with Biden's order can face fines of up to $14,000 issued by the Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration.

All federal workers and millions of contractors who do business with the federal government will be required to be fully vaccinated. COVID-19 vaccinations are compulsory for the over 17 million health care workers at hospitals and health care settings that participate in Medicare and Medicaid.

Biden also called on large entertainment venues to require proof of vaccination or a negative COVID-19 test for people to enter.

The president also called for all states to adopt vaccine mandates for all school employees.

Biden doubled the fines on Americans who refuse to wear masks in airports, airplanes, trains, maritime vessels, and intercity buses.

Amidst Biden's wave of new measures to attempt to decrease the spread of COVID-19, noticeably missing from his plan was requiring illegal immigrants to get vaccinated against coronavirus.

HHS and the CDC require immigrants to receive certain vaccines before they are admitted into the United States:

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS)/Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) regulations require that all immigrant applicants receive a medical exam. During the exam, applicants are required to show proof that they have received certain vaccines. If an applicant does not have proof of having received the required vaccines, the law states that the vaccines must be given at the time of the medical exam.

However, the list of required vaccines does not include COVID-19 vaccinations:

  • Mumps
  • Measles
  • Rubella
  • Polio
  • Tetanus and diphtheria
  • Pertussis
  • Haemophilus influenzae type B (Hib)
  • Hepatitis A
  • Hepatitis B
  • Rotavirus
  • Meningococcal disease
  • Varicella
  • Pneumococcal disease
  • Seasonal influenza

An Axios report from July claimed that 30% of illegal immigrants in custody of the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement have refused to get the COVID-19 vaccine.

"The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) continues its vaccination efforts to include voluntary vaccinations for individuals in the care and custody of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE)," an ICE spokesperson told Axios in July.

ICE reported over 27,000 COVID-19 infections among illegal immigrants in its custody since coronavirus testing began in February 2020. As of Wednesday, there are 851 confirmed COVID-19 cases among detainees who are currently under isolation or monitoring.

The city of McAllen, Texas, said in August there have been more than 7,000 confirmed COVID-19-positive migrants released into the city since February.

Based on a Kaiser Family Foundation survey from May, only 31% of "potentially undocumented" immigrants in the United States got the COVID-19 vaccine. Nearly 54% of Americans are fully vaccinated.

U.S. Customs and Border Protection encountered about 210,000 migrants at the southern border in July, reaching a number not seen in more than two decades.

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