- The Washington Times - Friday, July 22, 2022

Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas wants to see Serbian tennis star Novak Djokovic play in the U.S. Open, calling a federal rule that bans unvaccinated noncitizens from entry “absurd.”

Mr. Cruz, a Republican, issued his “let Novak Djokovic play” demand in an interview with The Daily Mail. He said the Biden administration is “pushing for a forever pandemic.”

Mr. Djokovic recently won Wimbledon.

The United States Tennis Association said that while it does not have specific requirements, it will “respect the U.S. government’s position regarding travel in the country for unvaccinated non-U.S. citizens.”

The U.S. Open begins on Aug. 29.

Critics of COVID-19 vaccine mandates say immunization should be a personal decision given evidence that vaccinated persons can still contract and spread the virus, meaning the shots are mainly a defense against severe disease.

Sen. Marsha Blackburn, Tennessee Republican, told The Daily Mail: “It is absurd that Novak Djokovic is not allowed to enter the USA. No one should ever be punished directly or indirectly for not being vaccinated.”

• Tom Howell Jr. can be reached at thowell@washingtontimes.com.

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