GOP Senators Urge Biden to Restrict Travel Between US and China Amid Child Pneumonia Outbreak – Five GOP senators have called on President Joe Biden to limit travel between the United States and China due to an increase in pediatric pneumonia cases in the communist state. Senators Marco Rubio, JD Vance, Rick Scott, Tommy Tuberville, and Mike Braun called to “immediately restrict travel” as China has had a “long history of lying about public health crises,” a Dec. 1 letter read.
The five men cited the COVID-19 pandemic as evidence, saying that China’s “lack of transparency” has “robbed” the US of “vital knowledge” in the past. “If history is any indication, we have cause to be concerned,” the letter read. The World Health Organization has requested China share “detailed information” regarding the outbreak, which is largely attacking children and has caused overcrowding in some of the country’s hospitals.
But the senators said there is no time to wait “wait for the WHO to take action given its track record of slavish deference to the [Communist Party of China] .” “We must take the necessary steps to protect the health of Americans, and our economy. That means we should immediately restrict travel between the United States and the PRC until we know more about the dangers posed by this new illness,” the letter said.
“A ban on travel now could save our country from death, lockdowns, mandates, and further outbreaks later.” The five lawmakers also referenced former President Donald Trump’s January 2020 decision to limit travel from China to the US as COVID-19 emerged. They argue that a similar measure is crucial to prevent another global crisis. Moreover, cases of childhood pneumonia have surfaced in the US, with nearly 150 cases near Cleveland, Ohio, since August.
While health officials reassure there’s no need for alarm, it remains uncertain whether the Ohio cases are linked to the strain affecting China. In Massachusetts, cases of pediatric pneumonia have increased, yet state officials attribute it to the common RSV strain, which annually claims about 10,000 lives in the U.S. Federal authorities have stated that, at present, they do not perceive a connection between the pneumonia instances nationwide and the enigmatic illness impacting China.
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“We are seeing about the same number and type of pneumonia cases in children and adults as we typically see this time of the year,” David Daigle, a spokesman for the Centers for Disease Control, said in a statement. “We will continue to closely monitor pneumonia infections and other respiratory infections and work with local health officials to ensure communities have the tools they need to respond,” he noted.