Republican legislators and governors have called on Congress and the Biden administration to reverse the COVID-19 jab mandate on military personnel.
GOP congressional leader Kevin McCarthy suggested the COVID-19 jab mandate being imposed on military personnel will be lifted very soon by the Biden administration.
“We’re working through what is the [National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA)], the national defense bill, we will secure lifting that vaccine mandate on our military. Because what we’re finding is, they’re kicking out men and women that have been serving,” McCarthy said on Fox News Sunday.
“That’s the first victory of having a Republican majority, and we’d like to have more of those victories, and we should start moving those now,” McCarthy added.
McCarthy’s comments follow a letter penned by GOP senators, led by Rand Paul, threatening to block military funding unless the COVID-19 jab mandate on military personnel is reversed.
Despite the discussions to reverse the military COVID-19 jab mandate, Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin said he wants to keep the mandate in place.
He claimed it's for the 'health of the troops.'
Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin said he wants to keep the military’s COVID-19 vaccine mandate in place to protect the health of the troops, as Republican governors and lawmakers press to rescind it. https://t.co/ZUcsdl6fKz pic.twitter.com/aXsvOaQxfh
— NEWSMAX (@NEWSMAX) December 5, 2022
"I'm the guy" who ordered the military to require the vaccine, Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin added. "I support continuation of vaccinating the troops."https://t.co/ihvKarmBmd
— Stars and Stripes (@starsandstripes) December 4, 2022
Stars and Stripes reported:
Congress may consider legislation this coming week to end the mandate as a requirement to gather enough support to pass this years' defense budget, which is already two months late.
Austin said he would not comment on pressure from the Hill.
"We lost a million people to this virus," Austin told reporters traveling with him Saturday. "A million people died in the United States of America. We lost hundreds in DOD. So this mandate has kept people healthy."
"I'm the guy" who ordered the military to require the vaccine, Austin added. "I support continuation of vaccinating the troops."
Last year Austin directed that all troops get the vaccine or face potential expulsion from the military; thousands of active duty forces have been discharged since then for their refusal to get the shots.