Idaho lawmakers are introducing legislation that would make it a crime to inject an mRNA vaccine against COVID-19

Idaho lawmakers are introducing legislation that would make it a crime to inject an mRNA vaccine against COVID-19

Republican lawmakers in Idaho have introduced legislation that would make it a felony to administer an mRNA vaccine in the state, citing safety concerns that would apply to COVID-19 vaccines made by companies such as Pfizer and Moderna.

“Notwithstanding any other provision of law, a person may not administer or administer a vaccine developed using information ribonucleic acid (mRNA) technology for use in an individual or any other mammal in this state. A person who violates this section is guilty of a misdemeanor,” reads House Bill 154 (pdf), which was introduced to the state Health and Human Services Committee on Feb. 15. The bill was introduced by state Sen. Tammy Nichols and Rep. Judy Boyle.

Promoting the bill before the committee, Nichols noted that there is “growing concern” about mRNA vaccines.

“We have problems because this was approved quickly, there is no accountability, there is no access to data, there is no risk benefit analysis, there is no informed consent,” she said.

Nichols insisted that mRNA vaccines be treated “similarly” to harmful drugs. She noted that there are “concerns about blood clots and heart problems” associated with the use of mRNA vaccines against COVID-19 that need to be investigated.

Approvals of mRNA for COVID-19

There are currently three types of vaccines against COVID-19 — protein subunit, viral vector, and mRNA. Vaccines manufactured by Moderna and Pfizer, which are widely distributed, fall under the mRNA categorization.

About 400 million of Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccines and more than 250 million of Moderna’s vaccines have been administered in the United States.

According to the CDC, mRNA vaccines use mRNA developed in a laboratory to teach cells in the human body to produce a protein or part of a protein that triggers an immune response. This immune response creates antibodies to fight the SARS-Cov-2 virus.

State Rep. Ilana Rubel, a Democrat, questioned Nichols about expedited Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approvals for mRNA vaccines against COVID-19.

Rubel asked what if vaccines were initially approved under the “regular approval process” and then went through “normal/usual tests” trials.

“I’m seeing conflicting reports on that,” Nichols said. “Lately, I’ve been getting more information to address that particular problem, because I found that maybe it wasn’t done the way we thought it should have been done, or how we should have done it in the approval process, as an FDA-approved vaccine.”

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