The nationwide fight against the coronavirus vaccine this week will see Republicans and their conservative allies attack a public health strategy aimed at ending the plague, making the corporation America a center of cultural and political conflict.
Texas Gov. Greg Abbott, who was seeking a ban on Covid-related mandates in the country’s second-largest state, said Republicans disrupted a Dallas-based Southwest Airlines flight because workers opposed the mandate. The statement was disputed by company and union officials.
Opposition to the mandate is becoming increasingly important for pro-Trump Republicans, and Abbott and Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis are pushing for it, further complicating President Joe Biden’s efforts to fight the plague.
The battle for the mandate goes far beyond Texas. A federal judge said Tuesday that the state of New York, which has mandated health workers, must allow exemption from religion, and that right is being exercised through the courts. “Ohio should ban all vaccine mandates,” Jim Jordan, a spokesman for the conservative R-Ohio state, wrote on Twitter.
The Brooklyn Nets basketball team said Tuesday that superstar defender Kyrie Irving needs to be vaccinated or not be able to play or exercise with his team. It praised Irving for “sacrificing” because of the tweet of former president’s son Donald Trump. . “
According to public health experts, it is considered the best way to stop the plague, which has lasted for almost two years, and its effectiveness in other countries is a direct problem for Biden due to the growing scandal surrounding the vaccine mission. After his first hesitations, he will accept the vaccine’s demands and separate the country from the cove to fulfill his president’s promise.
“There are a few Republicans who support the mandate at any level,” said Brendan Steinhauser, a former campaign manager for Austin-based Republican Sen. John Corny.
Abbott’s order shows that Republicans in Texas see an advantage in joining a more restless GOP base than their traditional allies in big business. “Today, there are far more conservative rural Republicans than Texas and even suburban Republicans, and they’re very influential,” Steinhauser said.
On Monday, Abbott issued an ordinance banning any state-owned enterprise, including private companies, from vaccinating employees or customers against the coronavirus, and expanded the ban on such requests from their agencies.
Abbott’s team explained the move as a way to clarify the move, after Biden recently announced that the U.S. Department of Labor would develop a rule that requires companies with more than 100 employees to vaccinate their employees against coronavirus or get tested regularly.
Abbott’s top strategist, Dave Carney, said Biden’s “scandal was intended to mislead the business.” “Small businesses across the state didn’t want to disrupt the president’s press conference.” This prompted the Texas governor to “clarify that things like vaccinations are not covered by state law.”
But Democrats and public health experts say the vaccine plays an important role in fighting the plague, requires a mandate, and is as reckless as Abbott.
Democrat Lina Hidalgo, an elected official in Houston’s Harris County, hit Abbott on Tuesday. “I think the governor told me at the press conference that this ban on vaccine mandates would not issue an order to evacuate the coastal region when a hurricane hits us,” Hidalgo told a news conference.
Biden tweeted on Tuesday, “The only way to defeat this plague is to vaccinate the majority of Americans. It’s as simple as that.”
Abbott, who is likely to run in the 2024 presidential election, wants to strengthen his credibility as a supporter of former President Donald Trump’s approach. In 2022, he faced a major challenge from former state senator Don Huffines’s Western Regional Administration, and recently called on Abbott to do more to challenge the vaccine mandate.
The White House has criticized Abbott’s move, saying businesses should follow Biden’s instructions. When asked about the Texas order, White House spokeswoman Jen Psaki said, “We know that federal law prevails over state law.”
But the debate, especially in the West, is not just about politics, but also about nature and culture.
Although Biden often speaks of mandates and sets targets for vaccines for groups such as federal government workers, members of the military, and health workers, his proposed rules do not force workers to choose between work and vaccine status.
However, some companies went on to tell workers that they needed to be vaccinated to keep their jobs. This includes Southwest Airlines, which said workers should be vaccinated in early December unless they are released on religious or medical grounds.
The airline has canceled thousands of flights in recent days due to bad weather and air traffic control issues. Republicans cut short the strike, citing staff shortages caused by unscrupulous workers refusing to be vaccinated.
“The role of Joe Biden’s illegal vaccine is at work!” R-Texas Sen. Ted Cruz said through social media. “Suddenly we’re short of pilots and air traffic controllers. #Thanks Joe.”
“I want you to stop going crazy before you do more damage,” Senator Ron Johnson reiterated on Twitter as opposed to his mandate.
Southwest’s business leaders, its pilots’ association and the Federal Aviation Administration have said the flight was canceled by pilots who objected to the coronavirus vaccine mandate.
Gary Kelly, the airline’s chief executive, told ABC News ‘Good Morning America’ on Tuesday that the weather and air traffic were “snowy” because the plane and crew were not in the right place for the next flight. Unlike some of its competitors, the Southwest operates a point-to-point system rather than a node connection, which aviation experts believe makes it more vulnerable to interruptions.
The Southwest Airlines Pilots Association analyzed the number of calls for pilots to be ill and cited evidence that pilots continued to arrive for additional flights.
The Biden administration has also ridiculed the history of the emerging GOP. A statement from the White House’s Coved-19 Response Team, Ben Wakana, said in a statement on Twitter on Monday afternoon that “the cancellation took place after the Sox defeated the Yankees, but it has nothing to do with it.”
The line of battle is likely to intensify next week as the expansion of coronavirus vaccination regulations may open the door for schoolchildren to be vaccinated.
The state of California was the first state to make it mandatory for students to be vaccinated after obtaining full regulatory approval, and it may not be done until next year.
Marcus Plessia, chief physician of the Association of State and Territorial Health Officials, said other states are in no hurry to follow California guidelines and are spending time on explosive issues.
“Even some of your more advanced states will open it up and be careful about vaccinating children,” Plesia said. “In general, the controversy over children’s vaccines is growing.”
However, the United States has seen a series of vaccination mandates at all levels, from federal employees to large technology companies and small police departments, which have swept the southeastern states in the summer after a wave of coronavirus infections and hospitalizations. nationwide.
Despite the widespread use of vaccines, the spread of the plague, which has killed 100,000 new people since July 4, has increased pressure to take aggressive measures to prevent further jumps, especially when children are not vaccinated.
A Washington Post-ABC News poll in early September found that a small percentage (52%) of Americans support businesses that require their employees to be vaccinated. The poll split the party: 8 out of 10 Democrats supported the mandate, while more than 6 out of 10 Republicans opposed it.
According to a study by the National Academy of Public Health Policy, about 20 states require government officials to be vaccinated or given regular test assignments.
Since the spread of vaccines, a wave of Republican and state legislators have followed vaccine requirements at businesses and major events, some re-examining vaccine requirements for infectious diseases other than coccidiosis.
At least seven states impose certain types of bans on coronavirus vaccination states or local agencies: Arkansas, Georgia, Indiana, Utah, Tennessee, Michigan, and Montana. In Florida, DeSantis has threatened to fine local communities that require government workers to be vaccinated, and the fight will be settled in court.
On Tuesday, Desantis announced a $ 3.5 million fine in Leon, including Tallahassee. He said the state violated Florida’s vaccine passport ban, demanded proof of vaccination from workers, and fired 14 non-compliant people.
Leon County Administrator Vince Long told officials in Tallahassee that officials would stand by their mandates and fight the fines.
Apart from Texas, only Montana has extended the ban on vaccine mandates for private employers, and the Biden administration is expected to pass a new inspection as long as it fulfills its employee obligations. It is argued that these steps run counter to long-term conservative principles to avoid restrictions on businesses.
In August, Abbott issued an executive order banning government agencies from vaccinating, but allowing businesses to work freely. At the time, a spokesman said, “Private businesses do not need the government to run their businesses.”
On Tuesday, Abbott’s order had a direct impact on the country’s politics, and the top candidates took it for their own benefit. In the Virginia gubernatorial race, former Democratic nominee Terry McAuliffe tried to link Texas policy to rival Republican businessman Glenn Youngkin.
“Greg Abbott, a supporter of Glenn Youngkin, is banning all vaccine requirements,” McAliffe wrote on Twitter. “We can’t risk such a dangerous leadership in VA.”
However, some Texas business leaders said they were unlikely to overturn the court’s decision, saying they violated the Biden administration’s imminent mandate and complied with the governor’s order.
Businesses and other groups are waiting for the Department of Labor’s Office of Occupational Safety and Health (OSHA) to announce the rules governing the functions of the association and its implementation. The Biden administration said Tuesday night that the draft charter had been submitted to the Department of Management and Budget as a preliminary step before publication.
Amber Gunst, executive director of the Austin Technology Council, said she represents a data-driven business that wants to take action to stem the plague that has killed more than 700,000 Americans. He has previously praised the Biden administration’s vaccine mandate for taking the decision away from private business.
“The task given by the governor yesterday is a challenge for businesses at this time,” Gunst said in an interview. “Companies are not at risk of violating OSHA standards.”