Instead of waiting for the Texas Political Class to decide how—or if—it should defend Texans’ medical rights against the Biden-Harris administration’s vaccine passport plan, citizens are asking state senators to take action and protect against government mandates and the medical establishment.
In a highly unusual move late Wednesday evening, the Texas Senate Health & Human Services Committee met while the Senate was in session. The committee heard testimony on Senate Bills 1310 and 1313 by State Sen. Bob Hall (R–Edgewood), proposed laws that are related to individual medical rights.
Nonprofit Texans for Vaccine Choice said SB 1310 “defines informed consent to immunization,” while SB 1313 “protects religious beliefs against medical treatments during an emergency and ensures that any emergency-related quarantine is done in the least restrictive means possible and with due process.”
“I think an important point … is that neither of these bills are anti-vax,” Hall said Wednesday. “It’s about being informed.”
In a prior interview, TFVC Executive Director Jackie Schlegel listed these bills among those currently in the Texas Legislature that would help defend against the Biden-Harris administration’s proposed “vaccine passports,” requirements that could punish citizens who choose to not take the coronavirus vaccine.
“Informed consent to a medical intervention is an essential human right,” Rebecca Hardy of TFVC told senators while testifying on SB 1310 late Wednesday evening.
“When my daughter was 4 months of age, she had an irreversible reaction to a vaccination she received that day,” Schlegel testified.
Citizen Stephanie Schiltz also recalled her 2-year-old daughter’s allergic reaction to a vaccine.
“Had I had a list of the vaccine ingredients earlier, it could’ve helped us to have been more selective with her vaccines much earlier and prevented her much of the suffering she had to endure,” Schiltz said.
“I never met a doctor who can list all the ingredients in a vaccine,” testified Del Bigtree, founder of the Informed Consent Action Network. “It’s incredible that we have to ask to have ingredients listed for what’s injected into ourselves or our children.”
“The best thing that we can do for our patients is give them the information that they want,” Dr. Allen Hopkins said in support of the bill.
TFVC’s Hardy testified that SB 1313 would defend Texan’s rights to make their own medical decisions.
“The resulting isolation and quarantine of innumerable healthy people with no signs of illness has been devastating,” she said, referring to last year’s quarantine mandates.
“I watched a granddaughter celebrate her birthday with her grandmother through a window,” recalled Reagan DeMarines, also of TFVC. “The grandmother broke protocol by opening a window because she wanted to hear her granddaughter’s voice and to just say happy birthday to her.”
It was the only contact the grandmother had had with her loved ones in months.
“[SB 1313] also provides due process protections to individuals before they can be ordered to isolate or quarantine,” Hardy stated.
Medical Establishment Strikes Back
On the other hand, the medical establishment came out swinging against the proposed transparency.
“This is another administrative burden that could put clinics over the edge,” Dr. Marjan Linnell of the Austin Regional Clinic said of SB 1310.
“I hardly think handing out a sheet of paper to the parent … is that much of a burden,” Hall argued. “The people’s right to know trumps a little bit of effort.”
“Senate Bill 1310 is burdensome without reason, and it’s an unfunded mandate for physicians,” Allison Winnike of The Immunization Partnership claimed. “Or, to bluntly quote what a pediatrician told me, ‘If we pass this bill, kids will die.’”
“Whenever you said children will die, that’s a pretty strong statement,” State Sen. Donna Campbell (R–New Braunfels) replied. “What do you base that on?”
Winnike repeated that it was a quote from a pediatrician, adding it was based on “the forecast in decline of immunization rates.”
“I think that may be an opinion disguised as facts,” Campbell said. “I just don’t see numbers on that.”
“I found it shocking that the medical establishment still thinks that suppressing information is how they’re going to make people confident,” Bigtree said during his testimony. “Transparency is the way forward.”