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Hemmer Haws: Fox News Host Storms Out of Restaurant When Asked for Photo ID and Vax Card

On Monday, New York City began enforcing rules requiring all people aged 12 and older to show proof of at least one Covid shot before eating and drinking indoors. The new rules apply anywhere with sit-down dining service — restaurants, clubs, bars, hotels, malls, grocery stores, universities — and carry a $1,000 fine for businesses that ignore them. Employees of these establishments also need to be vaccinated and can be fired for refusing. Cities like San Francisco have similar policies, while Florida has the opposite: earlier this year, governor Ron DeSantis signed legislation banning businesses from requiring vaccination proof, which carries up to $5,000 fines.

Coincidentally, Fox News host Bill Hemmer revealed on Monday that he had walked out of a New York City restaurant earlier this summer because he was asked to present a picture ID with his vaccine card.

 

Fox News itself has a mixed record when it comes to the vaccine. Many of its most high-profile hosts regularly cast doubt on the need for public health measures like lockdowns and vaccine requirements, and have given air time to pseudoscientific Covid cures like ivermectin and hydroxychloroquine, while others, like Hemmer, have publicly promoted their vaccination status and encouraged others to join them. Though some of its biggest stars like Tucker Carlson and Jeanine Pirro continue to promote skepticism about the vaccine, the network has tried to convince people to get vaccinated, a difficult task when the pandemic has been politicized and many right-wing leaders have railed against life-saving public health measures as violations of freedom.

According to Hemmer, the staff kept asking unnecessary questions even after he presented his vaccination via an app on his phone instead of the physical card itself. “I popped into the restaurant three weeks ago,” Hemmer began, “and they said, ‘Sir can I see your vaccination card?’ I said, ‘I don’t have my vaccination card, but I do have the app. I downloaded that and I showed it to them,” Hemmer said. Hemmer then claimed the staff asked him for other forms of ID. “I said here my Amex, here’s my Visa,” the host went on. Finally, when they asked him for photo identification, the Fox anchor left. “I turned around and walked out,” Hemmer said. “I said, ‘You guys can have it. Good luck.’ The joint was empty.”

Despite its outward position, with hosts like Tucker Carlson calling vaccine requirements akin to “Jim Crow” racial segregation, Fox News has something akin to a vaccine passport system itself. Employees can voluntarily disclose their vaccine status, allowing them to bypass regularly required health screenings.

President Joe Biden mentioned Fox last week when he announced his own new set of vaccine rules. He’s going to call on the Labor Department’s Occupational Safety and Health agency to issue emergency rules requiring companies with 100 employees or more to require vaccination or regular testing.



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