Mid-South lawmakers react to OSHA vaccine mandate

Published: Nov. 4, 2021 at 12:14 PM CDT
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MEMPHIS, Tenn. (WMC) - Mid-South lawmakers are reacting to the latest nationwide push for big companies to mandate the COVID-19 vaccine or tests by Jan. 4.

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration regulations will require companies with 100 employees or more to have unvaccinated workers test negative for the virus at least once a week or wear a mask in the workplace, according to the Associated Press.

The possibility of expanding the requirement to smaller businesses is still up for debate.

U.S. Senator Marsha Blackburn (R-TN) expressed her opposition to the decision. She says President Joe Biden is making matters worse concerning the American economy.

“Our economy is crumbling, and President Biden is doing everything in his power to make it worse. While businesses scramble to fill the 10.4 million open jobs in our country, Biden’s vaccine mandates will push even more Americans out of the workforce. We have already seen how these mandates harm essential workers in law enforcement, at healthcare institutions, and in first responder roles across the nation. Last month, I led the Keeping Our COVID-19 Heroes Employed Act to save our essential workers from being fired as a result of Joe Biden’s ultimatum, but there is still more work to be done. If enacted, the Congressional Review Act I joined alongside 40 of my Senate colleagues will put an end to Biden’s unconstitutional power play.”

Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchinson held a news conference Thursday on the topic.

Mississippi Gov. Tate Reeves made a Facebook post that said:

“The COVID vaccine is an incredible tool. The Biden mandates are tyranny. Forcing businesses to fire millions of Americans will only worsen his supply chain crisis. Biden is determined to plunge our country into more chaos to grab more control. We are determined to fight back.”

Tennessee Attorney General Herbert Slatery is filing a lawsuit against the Biden Administration following news of the mandate.

He wrote in a news release on the lawsuit:

“Unless we intervene, federal contractors in Tennessee will be forced to make sense of the mandate’s many inconsistencies that require their entire workforce be vaccinated or face potential blacklisting and loss of future federal contracts. That is simply unworkable and this lawsuit seeks to stop it.”

He is joined by attorney generals of Ohio and Kentucky. The suit is reported to outline the harm the mandate will cause their states and citizens.

The document can be read in full below

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