Vaccination pass: the National Assembly adopts the text at second reading

Unsurprisingly, but after 450 new amendments, the deputies adopted at dawn this Saturday the controversial bill transforming the health pass into a vaccine pass at second reading. Started at 3 p.m. on Friday, the discussion ended at 4:03 a.m. with an adoption by 185 votes for, 69 against and 8 abstentions, in a still electric atmosphere.

Started on December 29 in committee, the course of this twelfth health emergency text since March 2020 will have been marked by hiccups and controversy. While it was initially to be implemented from this Saturday, January 15, the date set for the validity of health passes for those who have not received their booster injection, and to deal with the outbreak of the omicron variant, the bill went into extra time in parliament due to new twists and turns: surprise suspension of the debates on the first evening, controversial remarks by Emmanuel Macron and Thursday, when an agreement on this text seemed close, failure of the joint committee of deputies -senators after a tweet from the boss of senators LR Bruno Retailleau. The text as voted this Saturday by the Assembly must be examined in the Senate during the day, and will be crowned on Sunday afternoon, with a final vote of the National Assembly.

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The provisions retained this Saturday by the deputies are close to those voted last week at first reading, but with certain modifications, sometimes inspired by the examination in the Senate dominated by the right. Thus adolescents aged 12 to 16 are excluded from the transformation of the health pass into a vaccination pass.

“Verification of the identity match” with the pass, reinforcement of sanctions against false passes, possibility of making access to political meetings subject to the presentation of a health or vaccination pass… The debates again stumbled on the same provisions only at first reading, without the government and the majority changing course.

The opponents of the text did not give up, like the elected LFI who defended in vain a motion of rejection beforehand against a text of “constraint” and scrapped on each of their amendments, multiplying the scratches against the majority and the executive, resulting in regular rises in tension. Accused of “political maneuver” with this text and the failure of the joint joint commission (CMP), LREM and its allies have highlighted their “responsibility” and underlined the divisions at LR according to the votes.

The LR group voted overwhelmingly in favor of the bill but is divided on the text with 26 votes for, 14 against and 7 abstentions. Their presidential candidate Valérie Pécresse had however asked them to decide for the “yes”. The left largely voted against, including the socialist group (9 against and 3 for). Far-right MPs also opposed the text, with the exception of Emmanuelle Ménard.

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