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Mississippi governor responds via Twitter after called out during Biden’s White House address

Published: Sep. 16, 2021 at 11:21 PM CDT
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MEMPHIS, Tenn. (WMC) - A war of words erupted again between the president of the United States and the governor of Mississippi.

President Joe Biden and Tate Reeves have been taking verbal jabs at each other during the pandemic.

Biden used his daily White House address Thursday to call out Mississippi’s leader. Governor Tate Reeves used Twitter to respond. Meantime, 24 attorneys general in Republican states fired off a letter to the White House.

Biden called out Reeves during his public address. He questioned why the leader of a state where the required school vaccination rate for diseases like polio, measles, and chickenpox is near 100 percent would push back so much against mandating the COVID-19 vaccine.

“But in the midst of a pandemic that’s already taken more than 660,000 lives, I propose a requirement for COVID vaccines and the governor of that state calls it quote, a tyrannical type move,” Biden said.

In a tweet on September 9, Reeves called Biden’s vaccine mandate “unconstitutional,” tweeting “we believe in freedom from tyrants.” And after the president’s remarks this week, Reeves replied on Twitter:

“It is a tyrannical move, Mr. President. Huge difference between laws passed by a state’s legislative body with input of the people versus one man threatening American workers’ ability to feed their family.”

All three Mid-South governors have expressed opposition to Biden’s vaccination plan. Arkansas Governor Asa Hutchinson labeled it “government overreach,” while Tennessee Governor Bill Lee called it a “power grab.”

Also on Thursday, 24 state attorneys general, including Arkansas AG Leslie Rutledge, Mississippi AG Lynn Fitch, and Tennessee AG Herbert Slatery sent letters to Biden, opposing the plan to institute vaccine mandates for 100 million Americans and threatening legal action.

“This is the worst kind of politics because it’s putting the lives of citizens in their states, especially children, at risk. And I refuse to give in to it,” Biden said.

The tussle between Biden and Reeves dates back to March when Biden called it “Neanderthal thinking” for Reeves to remove mask mandates in the state. The governor fired back, “Mississippians don’t need handlers.”

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