Florida GOP Senate crafts bill seeking to override CDC's no-sail order for cruise ships

Florida GOP Senate crafts bill seeking to override CDC's no-sail order for cruise ships
Gage Skidmore / Wikimedia Commons

U.S. Senator Marco Rubio speaking with supporters at a campaign rally featuring U.S. Senator Joni Ernst at the Forte Banquet Center in Des Moines, Iowa.

Florida's Republican-led Senate introduced proposed legislation on Tuesday to push back against the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's (CDC) extended no-sail order blocking cruise ships from resuming operations.

According to the Sun-Sentinel, Sens. Rick Scott and Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) are proposing the Careful Resumption Under Improved Safety Enhancements, also referred to as the CRUISE Act. The Republican lawmakers criticized the CDC's extended framework baring the resumption of cruises. The new bill is a measure put in place to block the CDC guidelines.

In a statement released on Tuesday, April 13, Scott explained lawmakers' perspective on the CDC's refusal to lift the guidelines.

"While many sectors of the economy have been safely operating for months under CDC guidelines, Floridians, and those across the nation that rely on the cruise industry for work, continue to wait for updated guidance from the CDC," Scott said in a statement. "The CDC's refusal to properly address this shutdown is wrong, and it's time to get the cruise lines open safely."

The proposed bill comes amid Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis' (R) vow to bar vaccine mandates which would require travelers to provide proof of vaccination before sailing. On Monday, April 12, Cody McCloud, the press secretary for DeSantis' office released a statement about the governor's executive order regarding the cruise ship mandate.

"The Governor's Executive Order provides that businesses in Florida are prohibited from requiring patrons or customers to provide any documentation certifying COVID-19 vaccination or post-transmission recovery to gain access to, entry upon, or service from the business," press secretary Cody McCloud said by email. "Therefore, the Executive Order prohibits cruise lines from requiring vaccine passports for their Florida operations."

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