Congressman Keller introduces bill to prioritize COVID-19 vaccines to American citizens and legal residents of the United States

April 19, 2021
Press Release

Washington, D.C. Congressman Fred Keller (R-PA) today introduced the Saving Hypodermic injections and Offering vaccines to Taxpayers Swiftly (SHOTS) Act with original co-sponsors Congressman Mike Kelly (PA-16) and Congresswoman Nancy Mace (SC-01).

 

Starting today, all adults in the United States are eligible for COVID-19 vaccines. In this eligibility, the Biden administration is welcoming illegal aliens to receive shots, per a statement released by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) in February, which would delay Americans and other taxpayers from accessing the vaccine.

 

As the crisis at the southern border continues to worsen, the SHOTS Act would instruct DHS to ensure that American citizens and lawful permanent residents are given priority to receive the COVID-19 vaccine over those visiting or who have entered the United States illegally.

 

Congressman Fred Keller (R-PA):

 

“While I’m glad that more Americans are eligible to receive the COVID-19 vaccine, I am troubled that the Biden administration is giving taxpayer-funded vaccines to illegal aliens. While preventing community spread remains a priority, the current guidance for COVID-19 vaccines only serves to further incentivize individuals to break the law and enter the United States illegally, compounding the crisis at the southern border which the Biden administration has yet to address. Americans have invested trillions in COVID-19 relief, which includes funds for vaccine development, distribution, and administration. I am proud to introduce this legislation to ensure that America’s COVID-19 vaccines are going into the arms of American taxpayers first.”

 

Background:

 

Last week, Congressman Keller joined Ranking Member James Comer (KY-01), Congresswoman Yvette Herrell (NM-02), and six other Republican members of the House Oversight and Reform Committee on a trip to the southern border to see first-hand the crisis currently unfolding and understand how it is impacting our nation.  

 

Members of the National Border Patrol Council informed the delegation that an estimated 60,000 individuals have illegally entered the United States and evaded capture in the last two months.

 

According to DHS, in March of 2021:

 

  • CBP encountered over 172,000 illegal immigrants at the southwest border, the highest monthly total in 15 years and an increase of 400% compared to March 2020.
  • CBP encountered nearly 19,000 unaccompanied alien children (UACs), an increase of 486% compared to March 2020.
  • CBP encountered more than 53,000 family units at the southwest border, an increase of 1056% compared to March 2020.

 

 

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