King Joe Biden did something he said he would not do as president-elect: Impose a mandate on Americans to get the COVID-19 vaccine.
Last week, Biden broke his promise in an address to the nation in which he blamed about 80 million unvaccinated Americans for the lingering pandemic even though vaccinated Americans are also catching the virus and likely spreading it.
“Many of us are frustrated with the nearly 80 million Americans who are still not vaccinated, even though the vaccine is safe, effective, and free,” Biden said.
“This is a pandemic of the unvaccinated. And it’s caused by the fact that despite America having an unprecedented and successful vaccination program, despite the fact that for almost five months free vaccines have been available in 80,000 different locations, we still have nearly 80 million Americans who have failed to get the shot,” Biden lectured before singling out Republican governors for daring to respect our constitutional system and Americans’ individual right to not put something into their bodies.
“And to make matters worse, there are elected officials actively working to undermine the fight against COVID-19. Instead of encouraging people to get vaccinated and mask up, they’re ordering mobile morgues for the unvaccinated dying from COVID in their communities. This is totally unacceptable,” Biden continued.
“This is not about freedom or personal choice,” Biden said. “It’s about protecting yourself and those around you, the people you work with, the people you care about, the people you love. My job as president is to protect all Americans.”
“We’ve been patient but our patience is wearing thin and your refusal has cost all of us,” he added.
This infuriated scores of GOP governors, as did his vaccine mandate, which requires businesses with more than 100 employees to mandate employees be vaccinated or subject to weekly COVID testing — or face a $14,000 fine per infraction.
“Well I would just say generally when you’re taking action that’s unconstitutional, that threatens the jobs of the people in my state, many, many thousands of jobs, I’m standing for them,” Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis said in response to a question about the issue from a reporter over the weekend about the mandate.
“We’re going to protect their jobs against federal overreach. This is a guy who criticizes the state of Florida for protecting parents’ rights,” DeSantis continued.
Oklahoma Attorney General John O’Connor released a statement announcing that he and his team are “preparing litigation” to defend state residents from “overreach of the federal government.”
“We respect the right of Oklahoma businesses and individuals to make healthcare decisions for themselves and their families,” O’Connor said.
“My legal team is standing by ready to file our lawsuit the minute @joebiden files his unconstitutional rule. This gross example of federal intrusion will not stand,” South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem noted on Twitter. “Joe Biden see you in court.”
My legal team is standing by ready to file our lawsuit the minute @joebiden files his unconstitutional rule. This gross example of federal intrusion will not stand.
— Kristi Noem (@KristiNoem) September 9, 2021
“Biden’s vaccine mandate is an assault on private businesses. I issued an Executive Order protecting Texans’ right to choose whether they get the COVID vaccine & added it to the special session agenda. Texas is already working to halt this power grab,” Texas Gov. Greg Abbott also said on Twitter.
“I will pursue every legal option available to the state of Georgia to stop this blatantly unlawful overreach by the Biden administration,” Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp said.
The GOP governors’ defiance ruffled the feathers of former Rep. Cedric Richmond, now Biden’s senior advisor.
“The one thing I admire about this president is the fact that we are always going to put people above politics. And we’re going to fight for those who really need our help,” Richmond told CNN in response to a question about how GOP governors are pushing back on the wholly unconstitutional mandate. “And those governors that stand in the way, I think, it was very clear from the president’s tone today that he will run over them,” he added.
“And it is important. It’s not for political purposes. It’s to save the lives of the American people. And so, we won’t let one or two individuals stand in the way. We will always err on the side of protecting the American people.”