New congressman Nick LaLota boycotts Biden occasion over COVID guidelines

A brand new Long Island congressman is boycotting a reception with President Biden Tuesday night time to protest the White House’s lingering COVID-19 protocols.

Republican Rep. Nick LaLota mentioned proof of vaccination, necessities to be examined for COVID 24 hours previous to visiting the White House or being subjected to masking and social distancing is “excessive and unnecessary.”

“Out of protest, I will not be attending President Biden’s gathering of Freshman House Members at the White House this week. Even though four months ago the President told `60 Minutes’ that the pandemic is over, the White House is today enforcing arbitrary, outdated and unscientific pandemic protocols upon members of Congress who accepted the President’s invitation to meet him at the White House,” LaLota mentioned in an announcement.

“The President’s requirements include Members being tested for COVID 24 hours prior to visiting the White House coupled with each member either attesting to being vaccinated or being subject to mandatory masking and social distancing.”

LaLota, a retired Naval officer who succeeded former Rep. Lee Zeldin within the 1st Congressional District protecting Suffolk County, mentioned “arbitrary and unscientific” pandemic protocols needs to be “far behind us.”

“I am forgoing a historic trip to the White House to raise awareness of this punitive policy in hopes that President Biden will reverse it and other arbitrary, outdated, and unscientific restrictions across the federal system,” he mentioned.

LaLota is in opposition to the White House’s COVID-19 protocols.
Thomas A. Ferrara/Newsday RM through Getty Images

Biden is internet hosting the reception for brand spanking new members of Congress within the East Room.

It’s unclear if some other new members of Congress are boycotting the Biden reception over the COVID protocols.

But upstate Rep. Elise Stefanik, the Republican Conference Chair, applauded LaLota’s resolution.

“For too long, the Biden Administration has worked to force their COVID-19 vaccine mandates on Americans and extend their authoritarian protocols. It is past time for them to recognize the pandemic is over and end these requirements at the White House, instead of continuing to virtue signal to appeal to the Far Left,” Stefanik instructed The Post.

President Joe Biden receives his updated COVID-19 booster in the South Court Auditorium at the White House campus on October 25, 2022 in Washington, DC. Biden delivered remarks on the status of Covid-19 in the United States.
Biden is a staunch supporter of following COVID-19 protocols.
Anna Moneymaker/Getty Image

On “60 Minutes” in September, Biden mentioned, “The pandemic is over.”

“We still have a problem with COVID. We’re still doing a lot of work on it. But the pandemic is over.”

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention final August rolled again suggestions for social distancing and quarantine after publicity to COVID-19.

In New York, Gov. Kathy Hochul and Mayor Eric Adams scrapped masking necessities and a few testing necessities. But staffers in medical services similar to nursing houses and hospitals and a few staff in metropolis companies are nonetheless mandated to be vaccinated.

Congressional candidate Nick LaLota speaks to media on election day in Patchogue, New York, on November 8, 2022.
The GOP representee is a former Naval officer who took over former Rep. Lee Zeldin’s place in Congress.
Thomas A. Ferrara/Newsday RM through Getty

The worst of the COVID outbreak that ravaged New York and the remainder of the nation starting in 2020 is over, public well being consultants say  The pandemic has been largely introduced beneath management due to public well being measures together with vaccinations, higher medical remedy and anti-viral drugs, safer sanitary practices in addition to pure immunity for these beforehand contaminated.

But the newest Kraken Omicron pressure of COVID-19 may be very contagious, with many individuals beforehand hit with the bug getting re-infected. COVID-related deaths in New York, for instance, spiked 30 % final month in comparison with November.

The White House had no instant touch upon LaLota’s snub.

The White House coronavirus protocols have been in flux because the pandemic has waned.

United States President Joe Biden delivers remarks at an event for mayors attending the U.S. Conference of Mayors winter meeting in the East Room of the White House in Washington, D.C.,.
Joe Biden welcomes bipartisan mayors, Washington DC, USA.
Biden is internet hosting the occasion within the White House.

Journalists who attend briefings and huge occasions with Biden are imagined to have submitted a vaccine attestation type, however there’s little effort to make sure that they really accomplish that and in follow it’s an often-overlooked honor system and other people can attend occasions with out the submission.

Generally among the many press corps, solely reporters within the each day pool must be screened for the virus with a fast check at a CVS-contracted web site off Lafayette Square close to the White House, which means that journalists who aren’t examined can come into contact with Biden and even ask him questions with out their viral standing being identified.

On presidential journeys and generally in time-sensitive conditions, reporters are allowed to self-test and electronic mail a photograph of their detrimental rapid-test outcomes.

The system is extra strict in some conditions, such because the greater than dozen White House Christmas events in December, the place company posed for photos with Biden, who at 80, is larger danger for publicity. For these celebrations, the White House arrange a big rapid-test heart at a close-by workplace constructing.

The Biden administration imposed the vaccine attestation coverage on individuals who enter the White House grounds on Aug. 8, 2021, earlier than extra transmissible variants for the virus eluded the most typical vaccines.