California Marriage to Big Pharma Breeds Mandate Mania

By Joseph D'Hippolito Published on February 22, 2022

While other states and many nations abandon vaccine mandates in the face of massive protests and plunging serious COVID-19 cases, Democrats in California’s Legislature want to make those mandates, for all intents and purposes, a permanent part of life in their state.

Four Democratic members of the Legislature’s lower house, the Assembly, introduced a bill forcing anybody who has a job — whether full-time employees or independent contractors — to prove to employers they were vaccinated against COVID-19.

The four Assembly members are Buffy Wicks, Cecilia Aguiar-Curry, Evan Low and Akilah Weber.

Their bill, AB 1993, not only demonstrates the stubbornness of the pro-mandate forces. At best, the proposed legislation reflects Big Pharma’s corrupting influence. But it also could represent a more dubious agenda from suspicious political forces. 

The Devil’s in the Details

If you live in California and AB 1993 passes, the state would consider you to be vaccinated against COVID-19 if you meet two conditions. First, you must receive two doses of a vaccine approved by either the Food and Drug Administration or the World Health Organization. Second, you must furnish proof that you got the second dose within 45 days of the first one.

If you couldn’t receive COVID-19 vaccines because of a prior medical condition or disability, or if you refused because of religious views, AB 1993 would grant you an exemption. But the state’s Department of Fair Employment and Housing, the Department of Public Health and the Division of Occupational Safety and Health would determine which exemptions qualify.

The four Democrats introduced the bill Feb. 10, and an Assembly committee likely would consider it in March. If the bill becomes law, employers would have to let the state know on Jan. 1 whether their businesses comply. Its provisions would expire when “the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices determines that COVID-19 vaccinations are no longer necessary for the health and safety of individuals,” the bill states.

Wicks tried to manipulate the legislative process last year to impose vaccine mandates. As The Stream reported in September, Wicks used a technique called “gut and amend” to turn her own transportation bill, AB 455, into one demanding proof of vaccination for employees, contractors and anyone patronizing such businesses as restaurants, gyms and theaters.

Only the Legislature’s scheduled adjournment and Gov. Gavin Newsom’s recall, both in September, killed Wicks’ revised bill.

But neither Wicks nor her three fellow Democrats wrote AB 1993. That dishonor goes to four State Senators and two different Assembly members, all Democrats. The bill lists three Senators — Josh Newman, Richard Pan and Scott Wiener — as principal co-authors. Sen. Bill Dodd and two Assemblymen, Bill Quirk and Mark Stone, are secondary co-authors.

Low, Newman, Pan, Weber and Wiener joined Wicks in trying to turn AB 455 into one mandating vaccines. In that instance, Wicks, Low and Weber introduced the amended bill, with Newman, Pan and Wiener listed as principal co-authors.

Given that Democrats hold 75% of the Legislature’s seats, and given that Newsom used the pandemic to impose emergency restrictions for nearly two years, AB 1993 has a serious chance of becoming law.

Big Pharma in the, Legislature

Not surprisingly, pharmaceutical firms want AB 1993 passed. Out of the 10 California Democrats involved with it, six took significant contributions from Big Pharma for their 2020 election campaigns. Among those six, Aguiar-Curry received the most: $46,950. Johnson & Johnson led all contributors with $6,200.

Low followed with $38,100. The three major vaccine producers — Pfizer, AstraZeneca and Johnson & Johnson — combined to give Low $6,500. Next came Pan, a pediatrician, who received $31,700 from Big Pharma. Pan’s total included $5,000 from AstraZeneca.

With $23,100, Dodd held fourth place in the group. More than one-fourth of Dodd’s donations, $6,600, came from the three COVID-19 vaccine manufacturers. Out of the $19,000 Wiener received, 42% came from AstraZeneca ($2,000), Pfizer ($1,500) and PhRMA ($4,500), a trade association. Contributions from Johnson & Johnson and AstraZeneca ($2,000 apiece) made up 25% of the $16,000 Quirk received.

Those figures “might be a pittance when it comes to campaign contributions at the federal level,” wrote Lev Facher from STAT News, which reports on the medical profession. But they’re large enough “to have a significant impact on a smaller, cheaper, and less scrutinized state election,” he added.

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A survey from STAT News showed that 81.7% of California’s legislators received campaign contributions from Big Pharma for the 2020 election. That percentage ranks second among all 50 states, trailing only Louisiana.

Among individual corporations, Pfizer donated to the most candidates, 1,048, in 43 states. PhRMA contributed $1.58 million, more than any other group representing the pharmaceutical industry.

Undercover Video Reveals the National Implications

If you think public health is the prime concern for pharmaceutical firms, think again.

Enter Christopher Cole, the Food and Drug Administration’s executive officer who specializes in medical countermeasures. In a pair of undercover interviews by Project Veritas, Cole described the collusion between his agency and drug manufacturers.

“(FDA officials) know they’re dependent on the drug companies, the vaccine companies and these other companies for their agency to operate,” Cole said. “There’s almost a billion dollars a year going into the FDA’s budget from the people we regulate.”

“Basically, we charge the industry millions of dollars in order to hire more drug reviewers and vaccine reviewers, which will speed up the approval process so they make more money. If they can get every person required at an annual vaccine, that is a recurring return of money going into their company.”

COVID-19, therefore, means a financial windfall for Big Pharma, with Joe Biden providing cover.

“Biden wants to inoculate as many people as possible,” Cole said. “There’s a money incentive for Pfizer and the drug companies to promote additional vaccinations. It’ll be a recurring fountain of revenue. It might not be that much, initially, but if they can get every person required (to get) an annual vaccine, that is a recurring return of money going into their company.

That includes children, despite studies showing that children are the least likely to contract COVID-19.

“Schools are going to mandate it,” Cole said. “They’re looking at trying to inoculate kids between six months and 5-years old. Just from everything I’ve heard, they’re not going to not approve it. I mean, it hasn’t been formally announced yet because they don’t want to rile everyone up.”

The Stream described the massive corruption within the FDA, WHO and CDC in its review of the new book by Robert F. Kennedy Jr., The Real Anthony Fauci: Bill Gates, Big Pharma and the Global War against Democracy and Public Health.

So as long as Big Pharma can make money from COVID-19, the CDC will never declare vaccinations to be unnecessary, contrary to AB 1993’s language.

The Plot Thickens

Buffy Wicks’ role, in particular, raises serious questions given her background.

Before being elected to the Assembly in 2018, Wicks held top positions in Barack Obama’s two Presidential campaigns. She served as state director for his 2008 campaign in California and as national director for a major voter mobilization drive in 2012.

Between campaigns, Wicks worked with President Obama for 15 months as the deputy director of the White House Office of Public Engagement. After leaving in 2010, she briefly served as the campaign manager in Rahm Emanuel’s successful quest to become Chicago’s mayor.

In 2014, Wicks became executive director of Priorities USA Action, Hillary Clinton’s super political action committee, where she became involved in fundraising and making fundamental political strategy. Even while an Assembly member, Wicks operates her own political consulting firm and works as a senior fellow at the Center for American Progress.

“She had little local name recognition and no track record of service on any city board, council, or commission before announcing her candidacy,” said Steve Early, a socialist activist from Wicks’ district. “Her past experience as a high-powered political operative makes her a magnet for the wrong kind of money in politics today.”

During her first Assembly campaign, Wicks received financial contributions from John Podesta and David Axelrod. Podesta was the chairman for Clinton’s 2016 Presidential campaign and founded the Center for American Progress. Axelrod was Obama’s senior White House advisor. As of May 2018, Wicks amassed more than $600,000, more than twice the amount her closest Democratic rival raised. That figure included contributions from Big Tech — specifically, the founders of Craigslist and LinkedIn.

Given her background as a member in good standing of the Clinton-Obama ideological cartel, does Wicks’ interest in vaccine mandates reflect that cartel’s political agenda? If so, how?

Regardless of what those answers might be, they won’t have anything to do with public health.


Joseph D’Hippolito has written commentaries for such outlets as the Jerusalem Post, the American Thinker and Front Page Magazine. He works as a free-lance writer.

NOTE: This article has been corrected to properly attribute Lev Staver for a quote we earlier attributed to Rep. Will Guzzardi. We apologize for the error. 

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