Rep. Walsh: Bill prohibiting WA vaccine passports draws a line on what’s acceptable

Apr 9, 2021, 1:03 PM | Updated: 1:18 pm

State Representative Jim Walsh (R-Aberdeen), just introduced a bill that would ban the use of vaccine passports across Washington state. He says he’s doing this because he wants to protect privacy, but it goes a little bit deeper than that. He joined the Jason Rantz Show on KTTH to discuss it, and began by defining what he sees a vaccine passport as.

“Any document or demand for a document made by a state agency — and this is a state focused law of course — so it’s state of Washington agencies or local agencies that would be required as a condition to an admission to a public building or a public place. And public place has a definition in state law here that’s a little broader than you might think. It includes basically public areas,” he said.

WA Rep: Safeguards needed so Inslee can’t ‘single-handedly’ shut down state

“That is public areas owned by the state or the county or the city. It also includes privately owned properties that are generally open to the public, so things like grocery stores and retail stores … I tried to keep it simple where I took language from existing Washington law and cut and paste it into a new bill that says the government — either state government or local governments — can’t require papers to show that you’ve been vaccinated for admission to these public places.”

Is there any indication statewide that Democrats or the governor is interested in implementing that? On Thursday, Gov. Jay Inslee addressed those questions, saying that he “hasn’t given any serious consideration to that,” going on to note that if vaccine passports do begin to show up, it will likely be up to private businesses.

Even so, Walsh says politicians have been careful on the point, and that most of the vaccine passport talk has come from the media.

“They have been careful, and that’s frankly part of the reason that a bill like this is important. It draws the line at what freedom loving people will accept … Most of the talk of having vaccine passports in Washington has come from the media, has come from pundits and others, usually of a more left wing persuasion who are advocating for it,” he said.

“But the governor and some of the progressives in Olympia have been a little more careful and that’s a good thing.”

As Jason noted, there are different arguments from both political sides. Someone like Walsh will argue freedom, while the other side argues equity, that by instituting these vaccine passports, it’s inequitable because not everyone has access to a vaccine.

“This is true,” Walsh responded. “The thing about equity is you can kind of shape it to fit whatever argument you’re having. I prefer to focus on freedom and liberty which have, I think, generally more standard and consistent meanings.”

Senator Ericksen: Even with influx of money, still seeing big tax increases in budget

Walsh says a homeowner or a business that is not generally open to the public could potentially require a vaccine passport the way the language of the bill is written.

“Certainly an individual homeowner can do that, and a business that is not generally open to the public could — under the language of this bill — still require some proof, if that was their choice. But a place that was open to the public or what’s sometimes called in the law, public accommodation, would have to allow everyone in and could not demand papers or a passport showing that an individual had been vaccinated,” he said.

Listen to the Jason Rantz Show weekday afternoons from 3 – 6 p.m. on KTTH 770 AM (or HD Radio 97.3 FM HD-Channel 3). Subscribe to the podcast here.

Jason Rantz on AM 770 KTTH
  • listen to jason rantzTune in to AM 770 KTTH weekdays at 3-6pm toThe Jason Rantz Show.

Jason Rantz Show

Jason Rantz

kia hyundai...
Frank Sumrall

Seattle City Attorney Ann Davison: Malpractice led to increase in car theft

Seattle City Attorney Ann Davison filed a lawsuit in federal court on Monday against car manufacturers Kia and Hyundai.
1 day ago
sex predators...
Jason Rantz

Rantz: State releasing sex predators to unsecured housing by school bus stop

Washington DSHS tried to quietly release sexually violent predators into a residential neighborhood in Tenino.
1 day ago
Jason Rantz

Rantz: WA DOH censored critics of ‘transmasculine people with a cervix’ ad

Desperately craving inclusion, the DOH is using Washingtonians to earn social currency, hoping to add to the department's progressive bona fides.
3 days ago
Frank Sumrall

Legislation to claim RVs as homesteads muddies Seattle’s homeless problem

Washington's Senate Housing Committee examined a bill last week aiming to prevent RVs being used as temporary housing from being towed.
3 days ago
Sounders Providence...
Jason Rantz

Rantz: Sounders fans livid new sponsor won’t perform abortion, needless child gender surgery

A small but irascible group of Sounders FC fans are livid as the team's new sponsor doesn't provide abortion services.
4 days ago
Seattle fentanyl...
Jason Rantz

Rantz: Seattle running out of dead body storage due to fentanyl ODs

The fentanyl overdose crisis in Seattle is so bad that the King County Medical Examiner is running low on storage for dead bodies.
5 days ago

Sponsored Articles

safety from crime...

As crime increases, our safety measures must too

It's easy to be accused of fearmongering regarding crime, but Seattle residents might have good reason to be concerned for their safety.
Comcast Ready for Business Fund...
Ilona Lohrey | President and CEO, GSBA

GSBA is closing the disparity gap with Ready for Business Fund

GSBA, Comcast, and other partners are working to address disparities in access to financial resources with the Ready for Business fund.

Medicare open enrollment is here and SHIBA can help!

The SHIBA program – part of the Office of the Insurance Commissioner – is ready to help with your Medicare open enrollment decisions.
Lake Washington Windows...

Choosing Best Windows for Your Home

Lake Washington Windows and Doors is a local window dealer offering the exclusive Leak Armor installation.
Anacortes Christmas Tree...

Come one, come all! Food, Drink, and Coastal Christmas – Anacortes has it all!

Come celebrate Anacortes’ 11th annual Bier on the Pier! Bier on the Pier takes place on October 7th and 8th and features local ciders, food trucks and live music - not to mention the beautiful views of the Guemes Channel and backdrop of downtown Anacortes.
Swedish Cyberknife Treatment...

The revolutionary treatment of Swedish CyberKnife provides better quality of life for majority of patients

There are a wide variety of treatments options available for men with prostate cancer. One of the most technologically advanced treatment options in the Pacific Northwest is Stereotactic Body Radiation Therapy using the CyberKnife platform at Swedish Medical Center.
Rep. Walsh: Bill prohibiting WA vaccine passports draws a line on what’s acceptable