Following in the footsteps of Florida, Texas Governor Greg Abbott has officially prohibited private businesses and government officials alike from requiring Texans to present vaccine passports.
Abbott announced he was signing Senate Bill 968 Monday night in a video on Twitter in which he defended Texans’ freedom to “go where they want without any limits.”
“Texas is open 100%,” Abbott reminded. “Texans should have the freedom to go where they want without any limits, restrictions, or requirements.”
“Today, I signed a law that prohibits any TX business or gov’t entity from requiring vaccine passports or any vaccine information,” he continued.
Texas is open 100%.
Texans should have the freedom to go where they want without any limits, restrictions, or requirements.
Today, I signed a law that prohibits any TX business or gov’t entity from requiring vaccine passports or any vaccine information. pic.twitter.com/JQXOe4cHgY
— Greg Abbott (@GregAbbott_TX) June 7, 2021
SB 968 was unanimously approved in the state Senate by a 146-2 vote in May and took effect immediately after Abbot signed it, Houston Chronicle reported.
Like Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis’ vaccine passport ban, the bill will add penalties on businesses and government entities who do not comply.
Any Texas business that defies the new law and refuses to comply will not be “eligible to receive a grant or enter into a contract payable with state funds.”
Furthermore, state agencies could also “require compliance” from anyone seeking “a license, permit, or other state authorization necessary for conducting business in this state.”
Abbott signed the law to discourage Carnival Cruise Line plans to require vaccine passports when they set sail for the first time after the pandemic out of Galveston, Texas, next month.
Now that both Texas and Florida have implemented laws to prevent cruise lines from violating Americans’ rights by requiring proof of vaccination, it is unclear how the companies will proceed.
However, both governors appear to be prepared to take on cruise lines that refuse to comply as the travel industry resumes normal operations post-pandemic.