January 12, 2022

DC Mayor Requiring Photo ID to Enter Most Businesses

  • Flyover Country

By: Konrad Holden 

In Brief:

DC Mayor Muriel Bowser’s new vaccine mandate, set to go into effect on Saturday, will require the public to present a vaccination card and photo ID (to verify the information on a vaccination card) in order to enter many businesses, including bars, clubs, gyms, and movie theaters. The mandate requires people to be fully vaccinated to participate in most entertainment activities in the city. Critics pointed out that the District of Columbia does not currently require photo ID to vote, with only two exceptions to that rule.

The Background:

The newest vaccine mandate will go into effect on Saturday, keeping many DC residents from entertainment, dining, and other amenities around the city unless they show a vaccination card and their matching photo ID. 

Mayor Muriel Bowser issued the order on December 22, 2021. The vaccine mandate applies to residents aged 12 and up, and residents over 18 must also show a photo ID.

The order came just two days after the mayor declared a state of emergency while the city was only averaging 1 death per day.

Many critics are calling out the irony of having photo ID requirements to match a vaccination card while allowing people to vote without showing photo ID, which is the case in Washington DC with only two exceptions. 

Democrats have been calling voter ID laws recently passed in many states “New Jim Crow laws.”

One Twitter user said, “Democrats really went from ‘it’s racist to need an ID to vote’ to ‘you need an ID to leave your house’ within two years. Whew.”

Others have pointed out that Mayor Bowser’s mandate will disproportionately affect black residents, only about 46% of whom are fully vaccinated. 

Notable Quotes:

“I am not vaccinated for COVID-19, I will not be getting vaccinated for COVID-19, and I will never comply with this rule. Spending my afternoon moving all my assets, memberships, and meetings for the next three months out of the District. I will never give in. You are not alone.” - Nick Solheim, DC resident

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