Late Thursday afternoon, Rep. Vitale released a co-sponsor request for a bill which would not allow any Ohio State official, elected or unelected, to require facial covering of any kind, without 2/3rds of a vote from the Ohio House and Senate.
“This bill will simply extend the same protections of freedom and liberty you (House Members) voted on for yourself, to the 11.7 million people of Ohio,” said Vitale. “Citizens are still free to wear a face covering if they choose; it just cannot be mandated without the 2/3rds vote.”
Rep. Vitale was referring to a May 14 vote where Ohio House members voted against a bill to make masks mandatory for themselves while doing business in the Ohio Statehouse and on the Statehouse floor. The resolution was voted down along party lines, 60-34, with all Democrats voting to require masks and all Republicans opposing mandatory masks in the Ohio Statehouse.
When pressed about the concern that wearing a mask may help stop the spread, Rep. Vitale outlined the research behind his legislation.
“They told us not to wear masks for almost 6 weeks, then did a 180,” said Vitale. “Many doctors disagree. Some, like Doctor Russell Blaylock’s review of 17 scientific studies, have stated that face coverings can actually be harmful and possibly increase concentrations of a virus in the nose, which travels through the olfactory nerve and into the brain.”
Rep. Vitale cited additional adverse effects that approximately one third of the study’s participants experienced from mask wearing.
“About 30% of workers developed headaches with the use of masks,” said Vitale. “Where there is risk, there MUST be choice, not mandates. And even beyond the negative health aspects of masks, the government should be protecting your rights. Not telling us to shut up and do what we are told.’”
When asked about the bill’s requirement from the Ohio Constitution, Rep. Vitale outlined its role in his legislation.
“Article 2 section 01d states, ‘Emergency laws necessary for the immediate preservation of the public peace, health or safety, shall go into immediate effect,’” said Vitale. “‘Such emergency laws upon a yea and nay vote must receive the vote of two-thirds of all the members elected to each branch of the General Assembly.’ I’m simply asking for the Ohio House and Senate to follow what we all swore to uphold, the highest law of the land.”
Rep. Vitale concluded the co-sponsor request with the following statement to the Republican members of the House:
“I am sure it will be an easy decision for you to co-sponsor this short bill and extend the same courtesies you gave to yourself, to all fellow Ohioans and allow representative government and the Ohio Constitution to be the rule of law in Ohio.”
When asked about his reasons for sponsoring this legislation, Rep. Vitale made the following statement.
“I personally cannot stand any elitist political attitude that states the people should be required to do something while the elite political class is not required to follow the same laws,” said Vitale. “I reject that.”
Ohio House members have until Friday, May 22, 2020 to add their name in support of the bill.
To contact Representative Vitale, please call the office at 614-466-1507 or email