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Republicans united against the WHO and its mission to control global health

Governors such as Ron DeSantis, Kristi Noem and Greg Abbott signed a letter addressed to Joe Biden to oppose ceding U.S. autonomy over the health sector.

Los gobernadores republicanos Greg Abbott (Texas), Sarah Huckabee Sanders (Arkansas), Ron DeSantis (Florida) y Kristi Noem (Dakota del Sur).

(Cordon Press / AFP / Voz Media)

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With the World Health Organization (WHO) seeking to expand its influence and have full power to manage future pandemics, 24 Republican governors expressed their total opposition to the United States giving up its autonomy to resolve health crisis situations, such as the one experienced with COVID-19, to the organization run by the United Nations.

In a letter sent to Joe Biden, the Republican governors assured that if the country reaches an agreement with other nations, the WHO will be allowed to become "a world authority" that dictates how hypothetical pandemics that arise in the country should be managed in the future:

If adopted, these agreements would seek to elevate the WHO from an advisory body to a global authority in public health. Under the proposed amendments and treaty, the WHO’s Director- General would supposedly gain unilateral power to declare a "public health emergency of international concern" (PHEIC) in member nations, extending beyond pandemics to include a range of perceived emergencies.

"Additional concerns arise regarding the establishment of a global surveillance infrastructure and requirements for member states to censor speech related to public health, potentially facilitating the proliferation of biological weapons. We are committed to resisting any attempts to transfer authority to the WHO over public policy affecting our citizens or any efforts by the WHO to assert such authority over them," they added.

WHO controlled by the left

South Dakota Governor Kristi Noem was one of the signatories of the letter. The Republican governor said that her state did not allow itself to be dominated by a "leftist-controlled WHO," but that her office listened to citizens, which allowed them to emerge from the COVID pandemic as "the strongest economy in America."

In addition to Noem, the other 23 governors who signed the letter were Kay Ivey (Alabama), Mike Dunleavy (Alaska), Sarah Huckabee Sanders (Arkansas), Ron DeSantis (Florida), Brian Kemp (Georgia), Brad Little (Idaho), Eric Holcomb (Indiana), Kim Reynolds (Iowa), Jeff Landry (Louisiana), Tate Reeves (Mississippi), Greg Gianforte (Montana), Jim Pillen (Nebraska), Joe Lombardo (Nevada), Chris Sununu (New Hampshire), Doug Burgum (North Dakota), Kevin Stitt (Oklahoma), Henry McMaster (South Carolina), Bill Lee (Tennessee), Greg Abbott (Texas), Spencer Cox (Utah), Glenn Youngkin (Virginia), Jim Justice (West Virginia) and Mark Gordon (Wyoming).

Not just governors

Days before these 24 Republican governors sent their written request, 22 state attorneys general issued a similar letter calling on Biden to challenge the WHO by disapproving its intention to control global health policy. "As the chief legal officers of our states, we oppose two instruments under negotiation that could give the WHO unprecedented and unconstitutional powers over the United States and her people," they wrote.

Likewise, the attorneys general opined that a global treaty would "transform the WHO from a consultative and charitable organization to a global governor of public health."

WHO fails initial attempt at deal

This Friday, WHO member countries rejected establishing a global agreement to prevent and manage future pandemics. This pact would result in states ceding their autonomy to the organization to resolve hypothetical health crises.

As soon as the news was announced, WHO Director General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus assured that "since everything possible was done, there is no need to regret." Furthermore, he said it "is not a failure" that the initiative he promoted did not come to fruition, reiterating that "the world continues to need a treaty on pandemics." The refusal comes just days before the World Health Assembly (WHA) is held in Geneva, Switzerland.