WASHINGTON – U.S. Senators Bill Cassidy, M.D. (R-LA), Jim Risch (R-ID), and 13 colleagues introduced a resolution that will ensure the president does not cede U.S. sovereignty to entities like the World Health Organization (WHO) by ratifying international pandemic agreements without Senate approval.
“The Senate approves all treaties the United States signs as a check on presidents negotiating bad deals,” said Dr. Cassidy. “We should not make an exception for this agreement that will take away power from the American people to respond to future pandemics and give it to bureaucrats.”
“The United States is a sovereign nation that cannot cede power to the deeply-flawed World Health Organization for any future health emergency. The WHO failed to hold China accountable for the global spread of COVID-19, which killed over 1 million Americans and thousands of Idahoans. Giving it power over any future health emergency affecting the U.S. would be a disaster with potentially deadly consequences,” said Senator Risch. “This resolution makes clear the Senate must approve an international agreement – in any form – that requires new or expanded legal obligations in the U.S.”
Cassidy and Risch are joined by U.S. Senators John Barrasso (R-WY), Bill Hagerty (R-TN), Ted Cruz (R-TX), Marsha Blackburn (R-TN), Cynthia Lummis (R-WY), Mike Braun (R-IN), Steve Daines (R-MT), Roger Marshall (R-KS), Susan Collins (R-ME), John Thune (R-SD), Markwayne Mullin (R-OK), Joni Ernst (R-IA), and Kevin Cramer (R-ND).
The World Health Assembly (WHA) is the decision-making body of the WHO. Following a decision by the WHA during its special session in December 2021, an intergovernmental negotiating body (INB) was formed to draft an international agreement to strengthen international pandemic prevention, preparedness, and response. The INB has developed a working draft for further negotiation and is expected to deliver a final agreement by May 2024.