Tennis champion Novak Djokovic has been denied entry into the U.S. due to the vaccine mandate on foreign travelers coming into the country. While Djokovic affirmed last month that he had applied for an exemption, that did not come to fruition. Because of this, he would not be able to compete in the tennis tournaments in Miami and Mineral Wells.
Florida Sens. Rick Scott and Marco Rubio have already asked the Biden Administration to grant the waiver and allow him to compete in the U.S., but now, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis is jumping into the fray.
DeSantis deemed the denial “unfair, unscientific, and unacceptable” in the March 7 letter, urging Biden to “reconsider.”
“It’s time to put pandemic politics aside and give the American people what they want — let him play,” the letter reads, explaining that Djokovic has already visited the states two times since the pandemic “without any apparent health incident.”
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“It is also not clear to me why, even by the terms of your own proclamation, Mr. Djokovic could not legally enter this country via boat,” the Florida governor added. “Please confirm no later than Friday, March 10, 2023, that this method of travel into Florida would be permissible.”
DeSantis also pointed to the hypocrisy of Biden’s rule, as he has allowed thousands of “unvaccinated migrants to enter our country through the southern border.” The letter continues, deeming the vaccine mandate on foreign travelers “ungrounded in logic, common sense, or any genuine concern for the health and welfare of the American people.”
“The only thing keeping Mr. Djokovic from participating in this tournament is your administration’s continued enforcement of a misguided, unscientific, and out-of-date COVID-19 vaccination requirement for foreign guests seeking to visit our great country,” the letter reads, ultimately asking Biden to grant the athlete’s exemption request.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) currently states that “noncitizens who are nonimmigrants and seeking to enter the United States by air are required to show proof of being fully vaccinated against COVID-19 before boarding a flight to the United States from a foreign country.”
“If you are not fully vaccinated against COVID-19, you will NOT be allowed to board a flight to the United States, unless you meet the criteria for an exception under the Proclamation and CDC’s Amended Order,” it adds.
Notably, the Biden administration has rejected the GOP’s proposal to eliminate the coronavirus vaccine mandate for foreign travelers, bizarrely asserting that it would be “unscientific” to do so.