When President Joe Biden issued his ill-advised executive order mandating vaccines for much of the nation's workforce, the immediate response in many corners was shock and outrage. Even those who believe in the virtues of COVID-19 vaccines expressed concerns that the move was a serious threat to Americans' health freedom. And now, more than half of American states are fighting back.
Biden's executive order states that private businesses that have more than 100 employees must mandate that their workers get both doses of the COVID-19 vaccine or submit to weekly testing, with non-compliance leading to a fine of at least $14,000 per violation. The move impacts more than 80 million private employees, along with a further 17 million workers at healthcare facilities receiving Medicare and Medicaid funding, bringing the total number of Americans affected to nearly 100 million.
Now, 27 republican governors and attorneys general are vowing to fight the order. This includes governors from Florida, Texas, South Carolina, Georgia, Arizona, New Hampshire, Montana, Ohio, Utah, South Dakota, Oklahoma, Tennessee, Wyoming, North Dakota, Idaho, Kansas, Alaska, Mississippi, Missouri, West Virginia, Indiana, Alabama, Iowa, Nebraska and Arkansas. In addition, the Republican attorneys general of Louisiana and Kentucky, both of which have Democratic governors, are joining the fight.
In Texas, which is already in the midst of several lawsuits with the Biden administration, Governor Greg Abbott said they’d be working to stop the “power grab,” while Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton announced the state would file suit “very soon.”
Meanwhile, frequent Biden critic Florida Governor Ron DeSantis said: “When you have a president like Biden issuing unconstitutional edicts against the American people, we have a responsibility to stand up for the Constitution and to fight back, and we are doing that in the state of Florida.”
He added: “This is a president who has acknowledged in the past he does not have the authority to force this on anybody, and this order would result potentially in millions of Americans losing their jobs.”
Governor DeSantis has also been vocal in his opposition to vaccine passports and mask mandates.
Georgia Governor Brian Kemp even went so far as to suggest there could be an uprising
over the appalling move, stating: “People are going to revolt. Government is only as good as what people can withstand. And if you try to do more than that, you have an uprising, or a mutiny.”
Mandate an underhanded "work-around" after Biden previously claimed he wouldn't impose one
The mandate not only infringes on Americans’ personal liberties in a major way; it also creates hardships for small businesses that are already struggling to get back on their feet after the pandemic and grappling with a nationwide labor shortage – never mind that the mandates make little sense given the fact that the vaccines aren’t providing sterilizing immunity and vaccinated individuals can still pass the virus on to others.
The move is largely being viewed as an underhanded way of instituting a nationwide mandate after Biden's previous claim that he would not impose one – something that Biden's own chief of staff, Ron Klain, seemed to admit on Twitter in retweeting a post
to his feed by MSNBC anchor Stephanie Ruhle that said: “OSHA doing this vaxx mandate as an emergency workplace safety rule is the ultimate work-around for the Federal govt to require vaccinations.”
Senator Ted Cruz (R-Texas) called Klain's retweet “foolish,” saying: “He said the quiet part out loud. Biden admin knows it’s likely illegal (like the eviction moratorium) but they don’t care.”
Biden himself anticipated the backlash
, stating in his announcement of the mandate: “If those governors won’t help us beat the pandemic, I will use my power as president to get them out of the way.”
Sources for this article include: